First real bit of success

I was spending some time looking at the businuess schools doing research on the courses offered and thinking about potential partners for KenyaWorks when I came across Cass Business School’s New Venture Creation Programme. It seemed perfect. A 5 day course for people with new great ideas. The only snag was that it cost £2000 which was obviously out of my price range. But they said they had a limited number of scholarships so I applied and hoped.

A few days later I received an email back offering me a place and congratulating me on being awarded a 50% scholarship. Great, I thought! Only problem is that still leaves £1000 to pay. So I sent a rather grovely email explaining my situation and amazingly someone at Cass was feeling nice that day and offered me the course for just £250. So I happily accepted and turned up a few days later all keen and chatty.

The course was a great experience and they had some fantastic speakers lined up and I got a really interesting insight into the world of venture capitalism and high growth business. I got to pitch my idea to all kinds of people including Claude Littner from the Apprentice who gave me a bit of a grilling. And I met some fantastic people and got really encouraging feedback on my idea.

But the best news was to come at the end. They had one prize sponsored by Santander to be awarded to one of the new ventures and out of the 50 people there they awarded it to KenyaWorks. It was a cash prize so in the end I was actually paid a little bit of money to attend the course.

This was the moment when I first thought that KenyaWorks could really be a success. Getting a prize at such a prestigious event where the competition and callibre of people was really high convinced me to push on and put 100% effort into the idea.

I guess it just goes to if you don’t ask you don’t get…or something like that.

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