James Eder, founder of The Beans Group, joins a team of 12 young individuals including Lola’s cupcake co-founder Romy Lewis, phone unlocking entrepreneur Carrie Green, social entrepreneur James Boon and former winners of Women of the Future Awards Zoe Jackson and Emily Bendell, who will provide aspiring, young entrepreneurs with mentoring and advice on how to succeed.
The 12 Ambassadors announced today demonstrate what can be achieved with the right idea and ambition in spite of limited resources: all the Ambassadors started their successful businesses between the ages of 18 and 24 and often with less than £2,500 to launch their business – the typical amount entrepreneurs will receive from Start Up Loans.
Eder founded website studentbeans.com in 2005 when he was 22 and just a few weeks after graduating from the University of Birmingham.
After being rejected by the bank, James received a low interest loan from The Prince’s Trust as part of their Business Programme, which not only offered funding but the additional support structure of advice and a mentor.
Eder says, “When we started we were bootstrapped. That initial funding helped us get the website up and running, print promotional materials and sign up our first few clients. However, it was not just about the funding, the advice and support we received in the early days was invaluable. To have someone on the end of a phone to run ideas by and review our successes, failures and our next steps was vital for our development. The value of mentors can not be underestimated, especially those that have been there and done it before, which is why I am excited and privileged to be an Ambassador for Start Up Loans. I can’t wait to be part of the first steps of new and exciting businesses in the UK.”
James Caan said: “When we announced the Start Up Loans Scheme, questions were asked about what £2,500 could really do to help young entrepreneurs. The Ambassadors we have announced today provide the answer, by demonstrating the potential of what can be achieved with £2,500 of start up funding. These young entrepreneurs have created fantastic businesses with limited resources but with passion, drive and determination to succeed. Through this scheme they will provide inspiration for others to do the same.”