Ignite 2014 finalists revealed

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The shortlist of entrepreneurs battling it out for this year’s £120k Ignite business start-up competition has been announced.

Last year's winner, Giel Spierings, launches Ignite 2014
Last year’s winner, Giel Spierings, of the Cornish Gouda Company

Eight finalists are set to pitch against each other in the final stage of the competition, which is delivered by Oxford Innovation, on November 11.

Chair of the judging panel, Stephens Scown partner Gavin Poole, said: “The Ignite finalists demonstrate clearly the amazing entrepreneurial talent we have here in Cornwall. It is truly a privilege to be involved in the judging process.

“The last few years have been challenging for many established businesses, which means that it takes even more courage to believe in your idea and start up a new business. To see these talented business people right at the start of their journey is very inspiring. The future looks bright for each of them.”

The finalists

  • AFYNA, Sara Young – offers an innovative range of organic skincare products, handmade in Cornwall, using ground-breaking product formulations.
  • ActorBank Ltd, Sarah Lincoln and David Bright – plan to provide a service that makes actors available to help improve communication skills in the workplace.
  • Excel Innovation, Andrew Davenport – plans to introduce a bilge pump (The Bilge Bug) to the leisure and marine market.
  • ISO Spaces Ltd, Ben Treleaven, Gregg Curtis and Andy Orr – engineer recycled shipping containers into high-end modular conversions filling the need for design led, innovative, distinctive and sustainable buildings.
  • Mangez Moi, Katy Davidson – creates and offers a range of products and accessories drawing on international expertise to focus on the market for gourmet food, particularly oysters.
  • The Cornish Ketchup Company, Kristian Fleming and Chris Gordon – founded by two friends with a passion for great food. Real ketchup, handmade in Cornwall from 100% natural ingredients.
  • Tinker & Conk, Clare Hunt – provides a range of children’s illuminated characters called “Mip Mops” and plans to release additional add on products.
  • TouchByte Ltd, Jeremy Sneller, Stuart Doyle, Mark Bailey and Claire Ogden – a Cornish IT solutions company providing factual customer in-store data and footfall information using face recognition technology.

The result will be announced at a special awards ceremony later in November where the winner will receive a prize package worth £120k, including £25k cash.

In addition, a number of established Cornish companies will support the Ignite 2014 winner providing everything a fledgling business needs to get off the ground from website design, digital marketing and PR services to legal and financial advice.