Campbell has this week launched a partnership between his charity and a number of corporates such as Bank of America, Herbert Smith and Accenture. The partnership will help young London-based entrepreneurs get their business ideas off the ground. “The UK is going to need more entrepreneurial activity,” Campbell says. “Entrepreneurialism is, for me, at the heart of getting us out of difficulty.” Bright Ideas Trust typically invests between £10,000 and £15,000 into new businesses run by entrepreneurs aged between 16 and 30 years old. Campbell admits the looming recession is frightening many young people away from starting their own company: “A lot of people are worrying about their mortgages and worrying about where the money to pay the bills is going to come from. Major financial institutions have also seized up funding for businesses over the last couple of months. However, we feel that entrepreneurial activity is often at its highest when there are periods of change.” Among the ‘bright ideas’ Campbell’s backing are a film production venture and a residential and commercial cleaning company. “We give them capital to help them move forward to the stage where they need additional finance from venture capital groups or business angels,” he says. “We know far from the negative image that Dragons’ Den perpetuates, there’s a hunger for new business ideas to come through. We understand that regardless of the climate, a good idea will be supported.” Related articlesCrunch time for small business loansBig Issue chairman: “Social enterprise investors need tax breaks too.”The Apprentice: that’s what I’m talking about
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