FAQs about flare Ignite

Female business student

Why should I enter flare Ignite?

The flare competition gives you the opportunity to:

  • win cash prizes to kick start your business or innovative idea
  • test your idea in a safe and constructive environment
  • write a business plan or proposal with expert support
  • gain access to training workshops and one-to-one mentoring sessions

Who can enter?

  • full or part time students of the University of Hertfordshire
  • alumni of the University of Hertfordshire in the last three years

You do not need to have studied any business related degree or have previous experience in running a business or working as a freelancer to enter the competition.

What do I need?

All you need to enter flare is a business or innovative idea – whether it's a product or a service – or have an existing business which was launched in the last three years.

Your idea can be from any size, involve any discipline or be in any sector whether its fashion, IT, fine arts, sports or food.

Is flare Ignite just for individual entrants only?

No. You can enter flare as:

  • an individual
  • a team (of up to five people) – this can include students and/or alumni or non-University of Hertfordshire members.
  • please note that if working as a team, 50% of that team must either be studying at or have graduated from the University of Hertfordshire in the last three years

I have a business or innovative idea but I'm not sure if I want to take it any further. Can I still enter?

Yes. The aim of flare is to encourage individuals/groups to create and develop their idea. You do not have to have a fully-fledged business to enter. The competition gives you full support on how to develop your idea. You can then decide if you want to take it further. Lack of prior experience of running a business is not a disadvantage.

I have never written a business canvas before; will this be a problem?

No. Although the business canvas is a major part of the competition, support will be given during the competition to help you write it. For information on workshop topics go to CareerHub or email enterprise@herts.ac.uk

How long does the business canvas or proposal need to be?

You will be given a template to use when round 2 opens, a canvas is usually a one page overview of your business or business idea. Guidance will be available.

How do I know my idea won't be shared?

We take all steps possible to protect the confidentiality of your ideas. This includes a non-disclosure agreement signed by anyone who has access to the flare ideas and business plans.

What support will I get?

All entrants can access a range of enterprise initiatives, such as:

  • expert advice in our workshops and one-to-one sessions (subject to availability)
  • access to our Enterprise Incubation Centre based at the MacLaurin Building (opposite de Havilland campus) or new Enterprise Incubation Hub when it opens in 2020.
  • Access to all business start-up bootcamps

For information on workshop topics go to CareerHub or email enterprise@herts.ac.uk.

What could I win?

The flare Ignite competition entrants compete to win cash prizes of up to £8000 plus help and support to bring your idea into reality.

In addition, all finalists will receive one year's membership to the Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The flare Ignite prizes are kindly donated by our competition sponsors.

How will I know if I have won?

Round 1 and 2 entrants will be advised if they have been successful in progressing through to the next round of the competition.

All round 3 finalists will be invited pitch their ideas to a panel of judges and will be invited to an awards ceremony in October, where the competition winners will be announced.