Dragons Den at CKS Community Centre

The Chairman of Omagh District Council, Councillor Errol Thompson, has launched a new initiative aimed at encouraging young entrepreneurs to develop their business ideas and establish small enterprises in their own local communities.

The ‘Dragon’s Den’ programme was launched at CKS Community Centre on Wednesday 23 January to help young entrepreneurs living in the Neighbourhood Renewal area of Culmore, ’Kane Park and Shandon Parks to contribute to the social economy in their locality.

This innovative programme is based on the television series which features entrepreneurs pitching their business ideas in order to secure investment finance from a panel of Business Angels. The Dragon’s Den concept has been adapted to support and benefit our local Young Social Economy Entrepreneurs.

Recruitment of potential young entrepreneurs will be through direct and indirect engagement from community representatives, youth clubs, sporting clubs and schools. The programme is open to those aged 18 to 25 years of age living in the Culmore and O’Kane Parks area. Young Entrepreneurs have a three-month time limit in which to develop their business idea and prepare to pitch it to the ‘Dragons’ at a Dragon’s Den Style event which will be held In CKS Community Centre on the 01 May 2013.

Five of Omagh’s most own successful Entrepreneurs have agreed to be Dragons and their challenge is to help uncover the next generation of Young Entrepreneurs, as well as discover new exciting business opportunities, whilst considering investing capital, expertise and time in the new business idea.

Speaking at the launch Cllr Errol Thompson said that the Dragon’s Den programme encompasses the voluntary, community and statutory sectors working together in an innovative initiative. “Eight budding entrepreneurs will be shortlisted to work with an assigned mentor over an eight week period, at the end of which they will be invited to a Dragon’s style event. The experience will afford them the opportunity to avail of training in all areas of Business planning and enterprise development which should be very beneficial for them” He went on to wish the programme every success and hoped that the panel would not be “as daunting and intimidating as the television version”

Further information on the programme is available by contacting Edele McGirr at Omagh District Council, by e-mail edele.mcgirr@omagh.gov.uk or by telephone on 028 8224 5321.