FAQs

In a nutshell!

We are a people accelerator and work with you as the entrepreneurial leader to develop your mindsets and behaviours – this is what makes us different from other incubators and accelerators.

We have four bespoke programmes, each crafted to meet your needs dependent on which stage of development you are on. This all focusses on specialist enablement which includes; specialist mentoring, internal and external events, investment opportunities, pitching to make you and your business  credible, backable and investable.

To apply for a place, simply follow a two-step registration process – ‘Register’ then log in and complete the ‘Chiclet Application’ form. We’ll assign you to the most appropriate programme. You will hear from the team within 15 working days.

What is the exact criteria for applying?

Anyone can apply. We accept entrepreneurial leaders with businesses at all stages and all sectors. We’ve four bespoke programmes, each assigned to suit your stage of development. In summary:

THE SPRINT
Who? Those with an idea, or in the early stages of starting up
What? A three month sprint focussed on a specific outcome
Result: The leader has validated assumptions and is on course to develop further. Alternatively, the idea hasn’t worked out and they’ve failed cheaply and failed fast.

ENABLE
Who? Those who have successfully passed through the Sprint
What? A further six months with enablement to continue acceleration
Result: Validation of the business model and development of the mindset of the entrepreneurial leader.

GROW
Who? Those already generating revenue with potential for high growth
What? Enablement and support designed to lay foundations to allow growth
Result: Scoping out and putting in place all the requirements to allow for the business to really accelerate and grow.

SCALE
Who? Businesses on a scale trajectory and on the hunt for investment.
What? A programme that covers off all the usual painpoints and challenges that businesses seeking scale encounter.
Result: Fully equipped and enabled to scale the business

Is Entrepreneurial Spark a public body?

Entrepreneurial Spark is a social enterprise. It has both private and public funding. Entrepreneurial Spark is registered in Scotland, but based throughout the UK and India.

Do you give business advice or mentoring to those who are not on the programme?

Sorry, we would love to but we can only focus on those companies within our programmes.

Where are Entrepreneurial Spark's hubs based?

We have 12 hubs across the UK, covering all the four nations. We’ll be opening our 13th in August 2017 when the world of #GoDo comes to London. For full details and location addresses please view our locations page.

Who is Entrepreneurial Spark partnered with?

Entrepreneurial Spark is partnered with Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest, Ulster Bank, KPMG Enterprise and Dell Technologies across the UK. In England and Wales we also work with Pinsent Masons and in Scotland Harper Macleod.

Is Entrepreneurial Spark part of the bank?

Simply, no. Entrepreneurial Spark is Powered by Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest and Ulster Bank across the UK in a long term partnership founded on a shared  vision to drive economic growth and support enterprise.

Why are Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest and Ulster Bank doing this?

This a step change in how Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest and Ulster Bank support entrepreneurial talent in the UK. By opening up their premises, mentoring and far reaching network, they are backing the businesses of tomorrow and helping ambitious entrepreneurs take their businesses to the next level – which is good for entrepreneurs, good for us and ultimately good for the UK economy.

This is about supporting the UK’s economic recovery and the bank believe that small business and entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of that economy. There is no catch for businesses. This is purely a scheme to help entrepreneurs run better businesses and this partnership is here to facilitate that.

How does the programme work and how long can you stay?

After you’ve applied, we’ll review your application to see how we can best enable you. If accepted, you’ll join one of our four bespoke programmes, all geared to best support you in the current stage of your development.

Each programme varies in length, ranging from three months for the initial Sprint, through to six months or longer for the more developed programmes.

What is entrepreneurial enablement?

Essentially, the team at Entrepreneurial Spark will support and challenge you and your team to build your entrepreneurial mindset and behaviours. Our questions will be very focussed and robust in style.  The aim is to generate a new level of thought and granularity around your business to enable clear metric setting and definable outcomes.

Are there any costs?

No, everything we provide is free to the entrepreneur – from our enablement through to hub premises and events.

Do you take equity stakes?

No. There’s no catch, except that being an entrepreneur is no easy gig!

Do Entrepreneurial Spark companies receive funding?

To be clear, you will receive no funding from Entrepreneurial Spark. Our aim is to reduce the initial cost associated with an early stage venture and, more importantly, getting you and your venture into a position where you are credible, backable and investable. Whether looking for significant investment or a small bank loan, we will make sure you know your business inside out.

To give you a flavour of the impact of Entrepreneurial Spark companies, since starting they have collectively:

  • Turned over £176m
  • Raised £151m in investment
  • Created 3,152 jobs
  • As of February 2017 Entrepreneurial Spark has supported over 1,736 companies
I’m a single founder. Can I get accepted into Entrepreneurial Spark, or do you only look for teams?

We accept teams and solo entrepreneurs, and will support you in growing a team if desired during your time with us.

Do I need to be full-time?

Startups can be full-time or part-time, but must have the oomph to make progress. We ask all our entrepreneurs to have a view that they will move onto working on their business full-time in the future.

How do I apply?

If you think Entrepreneurial Spark is for you and you can fully commit to all the compulsory dates for your hub then you are ready to apply.

If you are already registered your email address and created a password, click the ‘Log In’ button at the top right-hand-side of the screen and sign in using the details you created during registration and complete the ‘Chiclet Application’ form.

If you have not registered, please click ‘Apply Now’ to register, then follow the steps above.

You will hear from the team within 15 working days on the next steps.

What should I do if I experience any problems with my online portal?

Any issues logging in, accessing your details or booking an interview slot, please take a screenshot of the error and email to hello@entrepreneurial-spark.com and our technical team will investigate.