Five young business people sat around a table. A millennial black businesswoman is addressing her colleagues.

Helping entrepreneurs to have impact through programme synergies

9 April 2021

The article at a glance

Looking at the ways in which the synergies between our various programmes and Centres make a difference.

Looking at the ways in which the synergies between our various programmes and Centres make a difference.

Chen Davies.
Chen Davies

We often talk about the engagement and impact of our individual faculty members, researchers, and research centres. While this is natural and reflecting the important contributions that all members of Cambridge Judge Business School (CJBS) provide to the wider community, this sometimes risks missing the ways in which it is the synergies between our various parts that end up making a difference.

Recently, three entrepreneurs supported by the Entrepreneurship Centre and by Cambridge Social Ventures (CSV) – both affiliated with our Business School – were among the 40 winners of the Innovate UK Women of Innovation Awards (part of UKRI). The awards recognise and celebrate the top female innovators in the United Kingdom and support them to market and scale up their ideas with a cash injection of £50,000, and bespoke coaching mentoring. We were delighted to know that the programmes delivered at CJBS helped these three amazing entrepreneurs reach this important recognition.

Nicola Filzmoser.
Nicola Filzmoser

Chen Davies, co-founder of LatchAid, was supported by Cambridge Social Ventures, which offered her the opportunity to develop her venture while on maternity leave (babies are always welcome at CSV!). There, she met her co-founder, who brought both experience in setting up her own maternity-focused enterprise as well as connections to Cambridge tech advisers. Through CJBS and Cambridge Hub, she has also hosted several student interns, who supported her to undertake market research. This helped her to rapidly iterate her idea and to make it more relevant for new mums.

Nicola Filzmoser, co-founder HappyrHealth, completed the Postgraduate Diploma in Entrepreneurship at CJBS, attended the EnterpriseWOMEN workshops and was later supported by Accelerate Cambridge in 2019. During her time at CJBS, she benefited from interactions with other entrepreneurs, which brought her new insights and helped her refine her ideas.

Ruby Pillai, founder of iWarranty, first completed the Ignite programme in 2016, and then participated in the MSt Entrepreneurship cohort of 2019 and in Accelerate Cambridge in 2020. She found the masters very helpful to learn about potential strategies and to start to think differently about ways to overcome the challenges that she was facing.

Ruby Pillai.
Ruby Pillai

Their stories and ventures not only are testimonies of the power of determination and of the effort that it takes to transform an idea into an innovation full of potential, but they are also a fitting example of the synergies that CJBS and Cambridge more broadly can generate through their multiple offers and opportunities. What it takes for the magic to happen is for people to navigate the Cambridge maze, leveraging the help of departments such as CJBS, and grasp any relevant opportunity.

Entrepreneurs that come through either of our accelerators can take part in many networking events and talks organised by our various research centres and groups and they can find support tailored to the stage of their entrepreneurial journey through different programmes. The diversity of our offer is what makes CJBS the perfect place for serendipity and we are always happy to hear that this can give at least a little push to the visionary entrepreneurs that choose us as a launchpad for their projects.