The Young Academy supports early-stage enterprises working to improve educational opportunities for disadvantaged young people in England.
Through a tailored programme, we help ventures develop a business model which is both robust and scalable. Following completion of the programme, ventures have the opportunity to pitch to an investment committee for up to £150,000, as well as being prepared to better navigate the mainstream social investment market.
Specifically, the programme involves:
1) A structured and intensive support programme where every aspect of the business model is addressed in a systematic fashion.
2) Intervention refinement and evaluation guidance. Defining a clear process for social impact and having a robust system that is ‘process ready’ are critical. We create opportunities for piloting interventions in schools to validate assumptions.
3) Marketing expertise. The schools market is complex and fragmented. We help apply commercial techniques such as customer profiling and analysis of available data on attainment and demographic trends, to develop marketing and distribution strategies.
4) Networks. An expert advisory group will be drawn on to select and support ventures as they develop their marketing and impact plans. Access to The Young Foundation Ventures Alumni Network helps expand connections to include commissioners, policy makers, investors and knowledge leaders.
5) Mentoring and financial coaching. The Young Academy will provide each entrepreneur with a mentor and financial coach, complemented by access to in-depth legal advice, embedding specialist support throughout the programme.
6) Risk capital ‘The most promising ventures receive investment from The Young Academy of £20,000 – £150,000 to enable them to scale rapidly. Demo Days will also provide an effective means to develop relationships with other follow-on investors.
7) Active investment management. Successful investment is about more than just writing a cheque. Ventures supported through The Young Academy receive hands-on guidance to help them develop as effectively as possible throughout the course of the investment.
Visit the dedicated Young Academy site at www.theyoungacademy.org to learn more or apply to the programme.