UCL Enterprise Awards — 10th June ‘15
Spending the evening celebrating at the UCL Enterprise Awards got us thinking back over our Greenseed journey. Since we are always looking and moving forwards, it was really nice to have the opportunity to reflect, and feel proud of our achievements.
We were receiving awards both for the London Entrepreneurs’ Challenge (which took place in December ‘14), and the Bright Ideas Awards (March ‘15). We already knew we would be getting these awards, but receiving recognition for these, as well as getting the opportunity to give thanks, was a special experience.
Our journey began in October ’14 when we decided to create something to solve the problems we were facing with gardening, and encourage more people to take up this hugely beneficial hobby. Once we had realised that an app would be the best way, we went to a hackathon to get our creative juices flowing. Greenseed was born and we fell in love with the idea.
We entered the London Entrepreneurs’ Challenge and were thrilled to even make it through to the pitching round of Phase 1. We had never pitched before, and had no idea what to expect. We couldn’t believe it when we were awarded a special jury prize for best Social Enterprise. This gave us the drive to continue, and it was reassuring to know that it was not only us who loved the idea!
In December we went on to be joint undergraduate winners of Phase 2 of the London Entrepreneurs’ Challenge. That is when everything changed. We were now considered by our university to be one of the most promising startups, and we knew this meant a lot. After that we worked every day. We became Greenseed, and Greenseed became us.
The Bright Ideas Awards provides student companies with their first round of funding; as well as funding you also receive mentorship and office space. This seemed very unlikely for us, but the more we worked on our business plan, the more we started to believe we could do it. We made it through the business plan stage… and now for the pitch. This took place in an auditorium, and was open for anyone to watch. Each pitch was near flawless, and as we awaited the results we let go completely of the idea of winning.
It took a couple of days for it to sink in properly. To have such support from UCL is beyond anything we could have imagined just a few months back. This was now a serious venture. People believe in our mission and we need to make it happen. Without the support from UCL, things would be very different for Greenseed. We definitely already knew this, but at the Enterprise Awards we were truly able to appreciate it.
Having people believe in you is a magical thing. We have a lot to prove and a lot to be thankful for. Not just to UCL but for everyone who believes in us and our mission of getting everyone gardening.