Magic Candles business pitch wins Big Idea award

Student entrepreneurs from New City College Epping Forest were celebrating after winning an award at the Big Idea Challenge – giving the campus two wins in successive years.

Their Magic Candles business proposal – where old candle jars are re-filled using new candles customised via an app – was a winner at the presentations held at the Museum of London near the Barbican.

The prize follows last year’s Grand Champion Award which the college won when students pitched their innovative Cancer Care idea.

As well as the award won by Epping students, New City College had four other teams – from Redbridge, Tower Hamlets and two from Hackney – that made it to the finals.

The Big Idea Challenge, run by London Metropolitan University, is open to college and sixth form students across the south east, and seeks to unearth and reward new ventures and the passionate people behind them.

Epping’s Computing and IT students Gabriel Primaca, Kadesha Mahon and Mariela Parvanova were chosen to represent the campus after London Met staff delivered a Big Idea Challenge workshop to around 90 New City College students.

After originating their idea at the workshop, they then attended a bootcamp at NatWest’s headquarters where they met their business mentor and learned how to develop and pitch their concept.

At the final awards evening the students were presented with a plaque for the college and £50 gift card vouchers each. They were also able to network with a wide variety of entrepreneurs and business people.

Epping Forest Deputy Principal Sue Clark, pictured above with the students, said: “Many congratulations to our winning students. What an achievement for our college to have won an award for the second year in a row. Thank you to the staff who were involved in supporting the students and who attended the presentation.”

The other finalists from New City College were:

Herbal Energy Drinks (Hackney campus) – Natural energy drinks using plant products

Baby Flow (Hackney campus) – A suction device to remove blockages from the nose of a baby.

Digiblade (Tower Hamlets campus) – An eco-friendly hair trimmer which connects to an app to change blades.

Help Yourself (Redbridge campus) – A smart piece of jewellery which alerts the authorities to your location at the touch of a button.

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