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Mitie partners with Big Issue Invest in support of the Tech for Good challenge

Press Release   •   Feb 28, 2013 17:29 GMT

Mitie will provide £50,000 investment in the fund, as well as on-going mentoring and support.

Mitie has partnered with Big Issue Invest and Nominet Trust in support of the Tech for Good Challenge. The challenge aims to uncover England’s most innovative new ventures that are using digital technology to help transform the lives of young people.

Strong teams with a track record and ambitious plans will be in with a chance to gain up to £50,000 investment through a competitive programme called ‘Caterpillar’s Cocoon’. Up to 20 teams will be selected for this intensive mentoring programme (the antithesis to ‘Dragon’s Den’), and ten finalists will be chosen to receive investment and ongoing support.

Big Issue Invest’s mission to turn social ventures into successful enterprises through strategic, creative partnerships underpins the initiative. This resonates with Mitie’s entrepreneurial culture, and track record of developing start-ups into successful businesses.

Mitie is supporting the initiative by providing £50,000 investment to the fund, as well as on-going mentoring and support. Chief Executive of Mitie, Ruby McGregor-Smith CBE, said, "We are delighted to support Big Issue Invest because it's an initiative that will foster entrepreneurialism in a way that embraces modern technology and benefits young people, and those are things we are particularly passionate about.

"This investment allows us to support the next generation of innovation and technological change and we are excited about watching these enterprises start and grow."

With more than one million young people in the UK not in education, employment or training (NEETs), the Tech for Good Challenge is looking to support the development of digital technology innovations addressing this major social problem. Importantly, applicants must engage with and work for young people in new, more meaningful and relevant ways to provide imaginative solutions to the issues they face.

“Everywhere you look, people’s lives are being transformed by technology,” says Nigel Kershaw OBE, Chief Executive of Big Issue Invest. “We’re setting out to find 10 enterprises that are using technology to positively transform the lives of young people.”

Applications for the challenge are open until 15 April.
Click here to find out more and submit an application.

-ENDS-

For further information, contact:

Mitie Group PLC

John Telling, Group Corporate Affairs Director
T: +44 (0)203 123 8673
M: +44 (0)7979 701 006
E: john.telling@mitie.com

Erica Lockhart, Head of Investor Relations and External Affairs
T: +44 (0)203 123 8179
M: +44 (0)7979 784 488
E: erica.lockhart@mitie.com

About Big Issue Invest (BII)

Big Issue Invest is the social investment arm of The Big Issue. Our mission – to dismantle poverty and inequality by investing in business solutions to social and environmental challenges. We help scale up social enterprises and charities throughout the UK by providing loans and investments from £50,000 to £1m. We are led by social entrepreneurs and experienced social financiers who have firsthand experience of building and running social businesses in both good and difficult times. www.bigissueinvest.com

About Nominet TrustNominet

Trust believes that the use of technology can transform how we address big social challenges so we bring together, invest in and support people to do just this.
Nominet Trust offers the space for social entrepreneurs to test, develop and scale their products and services supported by funding, expertise and access to networks. In less than two years, Nominet Trust has invested more than £12 million in enterprises that use technology as the basis for social innovation. www.nominettrust.org.uk

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