London Met’s Big Idea challenge celebrates young entrepreneurs

Student teams from across the capital gathered in the University’s Great Hall for part two of the prestigious annual awards, one of the biggest of its kind in London.

Date: 01 May 2024

A team of entrepreneurs from Shooters Hill Sixth Form College triumphed over competition from various schools and colleges across London to be crowned overall winners of London Metropolitan University’s 12th annual Big Idea Challenge last night. 

Organised by London Met’s Outreach Team, with support from the Enterprise Team and staff from across the university, the Big Idea Challenge has grown to become one of the capital’s most significant entrepreneurial competitions for young Londoners. Over the past decade, the Big Idea Challenge has provided a platform for over 200 ideas and supported 20 thousands of young people from across London. 

Award-winning smart budgeting 

The team from Shooters Hill devised a smart budgeting app that recommends activities and places of interest based on your interests and budget. The app was chosen for its innovative approach and well-thought-out business model. 

The first runner-up was the inventive ‘Leave it 2 Us’ app, designed by a team from Hampstead Fine Arts College. This novel solution allows single parents to connect with like-minded, DBS-checked local parents for mutual childcare support. 

Securing the second runner-up spot was ‘MAG VISION’ from City and Islington College (CANDI). Their concept is for smart glasses that connect to any mobile device, enabling users to view private information when in public securely. 

Another team from Hampstead Fine Arts College won The People’s Choice award for ‘Recipe Me’, a user-friendly smartphone application that suggests delicious recipes based on ingredients already in users' kitchens, combining convenience with culinary creativity. The app garnered votes from hundreds of people worldwide. 

The awards evening, held in the Great Hall at London Metropolitan University, was hosted by Funmi Ajibodun and Renzo Veschini from the University’s Outreach Team. The audience also enjoyed an inspirational talk from sisters Dr. Abigail and Donna Otchere, founders of SiSTEM, a platform and network that connects women with science. 

Liz Routhorn, Head of Widening Participation and Outreach, expressed her enthusiasm for the event: "Tonight is a vibrant showcase of the potential within our community. At London Met, we're committed to fostering strong local connections and inspiring young people to realise their potential. This Big Idea not only highlights the creativity of London’s youth but also strengthens the ties between the university and our community." 

In addition to the Schools and Colleges awards, London Met’s Student Ambassadors were recognised for their hard work throughout the year and Amanda Hobbs from St Bernard’s Catholic Grammar School was named Teacher of the Year for her commitment to the Big Idea Challenge and her students. 

Thank you to our judges 

London Metropolitan University is grateful to the eminent panel who deliberated over this year’s entries: 

Four young entrepreneurs on stage at London Met's Big Idea Challenge

Each year, London Met runs two separate competitions as part of its Big Idea Challenge, one aimed at the University's students and recent graduates, and one for local students at local schools and colleges. In both competitions, students with an idea for a new innovative business, a socially-minded community or environment-focused project, or a creatively ingenious freelance endeavour.

The Big Idea Challenge (London Met Students and Graduates) awards night took place on 19 April 2024.