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Business scheme for teens


Established entrepreneur and 2008 Apprentice finalist Claire Young is launching TeenBiz, the UK's first not-for-profit business start up scheme for under 18s, in partnership with the Royal Bank of Scotland.

Claire, 33, from Wakefield, will launch TeenBiz on Tuesday 1st November 2011 to encourage young entrepreneurs aged 13-18-years-old to enter the world of business. The involvement from the Royal Bank of Scotland makes them the first and only high street bank to offer teenagers a business bank account without the approval of a parent or guardian.

The TeenBiz scheme is free for students and aims to help 100 new businesses on their way over the next three years, with 24 awards of up to £500 being given in the first year and numbers growing each subsequent year. Claire is aiming to generate funding in 2012 to enable a TeenBiz Tour to visit one school in every region for 1200 students to attend and award funding to one student in each county in order to grow the scheme.

The scheme launches as the total number of unemployed aged between 16-24-years-old hits a record high of 991,000, with a jobless rate of 21.3 per cent.

Applications for funding will be made via <>  from Tuesday 1st November. They will then be reviewed and from the 1st January 2012 two applicants every month in the first year will receive up to £500 funding, a mentor and a start up pack.

Chris Sullivan, Chief Executive Corporate Banking Division, RBS, said: "The Royal Bank of Scotland is pleased to support TeenBiz and play an active role in helping young people get into business. Until now, young people could become a company director at 16, but no funding or business bank accounts are available till 18. We’re pleased to be able to change that.”

"We're calling it 'Business in a Box'” says founder, Claire Young, "The value of what successful applicants get is substantial and will give them items they need to do business for real; for example Companies House set up, business cards, a website, a stationary voucher, office space, USB sticks and a virtual PA service, as well as highly valuable mentor time.”

Claire decided to set up TeenBiz after becoming tired of people talking about making a change, but not actively doing anything about it. She said: "David Cameron is promising us the most entrepreneurial decade we’ve seen yet there are little actions to reflect this. We gear up young people at school to start their own businesses and provide them with very little support and structure to do so - I believe for enterprise to have longevity there needs to be something which is sustainable.

"I want to build TeenBiz and the first 24 winners will ultimately become the company’s young board of directors and help influence the business. There is no-one better to ask about young people than young people themselves!

"There is a lot of initiative regionally, but from my experience of working with schools in Yorkshire I can see a need for better support and plenty of opportunities to better support young people entering into business.”

Alongside RBS, in Yorkshire the Yorkshire Mafia and Brand Yorkshire have already sponsored students. Nationally the British Chambers of Commerce, the Peter Jones Foundation and the National Enterprise Network have all signed up as partners for TeenBiz.