Henley Greenshoots Seed Finance Award Scheme
Greenshoots is targeted at businesses recently launched by students and graduates of the University of Reading and Henley Business School. Particular interest is sought from businesses that have occupied either the Henley Start-Up Business Incubator or the Entrepreneurship Hub and those who have previously participated in the IDEAFEST Student Business Idea Competition and the Henley Summer Start-Up Boot Camp that have gone on to start a business.
The key dates for Greenshoots 2024 are as follows:
- Greenshoots opens for applications, 8 April 2024
- Greenshoots closes for applications, 20 May 2024
- Henley Greenshoots Seed Finance Award Ceremony 2024, 25 June 2024 at 10:00am in room G15 of the Henley Business School building, Whiteknights campus
To be eligible for Greenshoots funding, businesses must be incorporated at/after 1 August 2021 and meet the eligibility criteria as more specifically described below:
- Entrants must be students or graduates of the University of Reading or Henley Business School - graduates must have graduated in 2023 or later
- Entrants can be individuals or teams
- Entrants must be permanent UK residents or, in the case of non-European Economic Area students or graduates, hold an appropriate visa and have been living in the UK for the duration of their University of Reading or Henley Business School studies
- The start-up must be registered as a trading company in the UK
- Entrants must be at least 18 years old
- Entrants must own a majority share (>50%) in the start-up
- Students who set up businesses as a result of their course (e.g. BA Entrepreneurship) or module (e.g. Applied Entrepreneurship) are eligible
- Previous recipients of a Greenshoots award are ineligible
HCfE reserves the right to check the personal details provided by Greenshoots applicants on submission to make sure that the awards eligibility criteria are met.
For 2023, the following eight companies were chosen as the Greenshoots award winners:
- BloodMatch, a health-tech platform founded by Nor El Islam Messedad, which connects compatible blood donors with patients in need of a match.
- InvestorPro Academy, an online education platform and community founded by Brandon Bradford, which teaches beginner traders and investors about stocks, cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens.
- LetPlant, a proptech and biotech app founded by Tolu Abdulsalam, which a uses a remotely controlled smart planter system to allow customers to monitor and optimise the growth and health of their plants.
- LOJUTU, a software development company founded by John Ayodele, which has developed a financial literacy and wealth-building app called Realise that acts as a savings, investments and fundraising platform.
- Phytapanel Agriculture, a deployable indoor farm business founded by Korntawat Somwong, which uses a fan, a filtration panel and air quality sensors to grow microgreens.
- Pop Lids, a producer of reusable lids founded by Conor McNamara, which seeks to revolutionise disposable takeaway coffees by reducing plastic waste.
- Prink, an event marketplace app founded by William Trevis, which aims to connect university students through a digital 'town square' of events in halls accommodation and across campus.
- Soluta Fintech, an alternative investment platform founded by Yasuki Matsuzaki and Romeo Lucarelli, which individuals and businesses can use to make environmentally sustainable financial decisions and manage their portfolios.
The awards were presented at the Henley Greenshoots Seed Finance Award Scheme Ceremony 2023 on 27 June 2023. The full news release can be read here.
Greenshoots is sponsored and supported by Santander Universities.