Lancaster students come runner up in Million Makers Challenge

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A team of Lancaster students came runners up to students from Huddersfield University in the recent Prince’s Trust Million Makers Challenge. The event, supported by eFinancialCareers, saw teams having to present a fully costed business plan to a panel of dragons, and put their entrepreneurial plans into action during the four month challenge by running their businesses.

Each team had a target of raising at least £2,500 for The Princes Trust charity. The Lancaster students raised £3,070 in the event which aimed to raise money for disadvantaged people getting into the workplace. The charity gives practical and financial support by developing key workplace skills such as motivation and confidence in 14-30-year-olds who have struggled in school, been in care, are long-term unemployed or in trouble with the law. Million Makers is a national campaign to raise £1m towards the £40m The Prince’s Trust needs to continue every year.

In order to raise the funds, the Lancaster team held a PlayStation tournament and invested any money raised into the stock market, managing to raise £3,070 over a three month period. Out of 17 teams from nine universities, they were runners up, losing out only to Huddersfield University, who managed to raise £5,049. In total, all of the teams raised £17,524 for the charity.

Chris McKenna, a member of the Lancaster team said of their fundraising effort: “We began to raise money by organising a FIFA tournament. We charged an entry fee and offered a cash prize to the winner. Due to the time constraint, we concluded that the fastest way to raise the amount needed would be by undertaking investments in the financial markets. Our primary investments were into futures such as S&P e-mini futures. To support our investments, we did several company analyses, which proved to be valuable and hence we achieved the target amount of £3,000.”

The prizes for the students were three week long summer work placements at well-known financial organisations, such as Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America and Nomura, as well as The Prince’s Trust.

James Bennett, Managing Director of eFinancialCareers for EMEA and APAC commented “The objective of University Million Makers is to develop business skills and nurture talent – and in doing so raise funds for disadvantaged people through The Trust. We congratulate the Lancaster team on their ingenuity and achievement.”

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