Worth Foundation Fund, set up by the founders of Worth Retail has just launched. The competition will see an expert panel scouring the nation for a retail entrepreneur with a big idea that will get tills ringing. Winners and runners-up will have access to an investment prize of up to £200,000 being raised on equity crowdfunding platform Seedrs, which allows the public to invest in and own a portion of each of the Worth Foundation winning businesses. Once the contest is closed and investment target reached, the winner will have access to up to £100,000 of investment and up to £50,000 of investment will be made available to each of the two runners-up.
The winner will also have access to £3,000 funding from Worth, plus expert mentoring equivalent to £9,000 to help them get their ideas off the ground, and the opportunity to boost their brand with a pop-up shop at Shoreditch’s Boxpark for one month. Runners-up will receive £1,500 each and £4,500 worth of mentoring from the team.
Alex Johns and Paul Soanes, retail experts and the founders and managing partners of Worth Retail, will head up the judging panel, which is comprised of top UK entrepreneurs: Roger Wade of Boxpark, Jeff Lynn of Seedrs and Michael Acton Smith of Mind Candy, along with Jayne Atherton, Metro’s Business Editor and Kenny Campbell, Metro’s Editor.
To be eligible, retailers need to have been trading for no more than two years, have a turnover of less than £250,000 and most importantly, have a great idea that they’re sure will be the next big thing with the right support, which will come in the form of mentoring from Alex Johns and Paul Soanes.
Discussing Worth Foundation Fund, Paul Soanes said: “People complain that the retail landscape is changing too fast, but for those with the right knowledge, this presents a real opportunity. Through the Worth Foundation Fund, we want to find talented people with fire in their belly for retailing, and help equip them with the resources, skills and knowledge they need to grow their businesses into sustainable and profitable endeavours.”