Enterprise support

  • FUEL Awards

    FUEL is the perfect opportunity for future entrepreneurs and anyone passionate about driving social and environmental change. It’s all about using a mix of funding, knowledge and mentoring to achieve your goals.

    With FUEL, you’ll have the chance to win a cash prize of up to £3,000 to invest in your idea or existing business. Prizes are offered in the following categories:

    • Innovative Concept Award

      This award celebrates individuals or teams at a pre-launch stage who have developed an innovative and viable business or social enterprise idea, and have proven their concept. For this category, we are looking for clear evidence of innovation in your concept.

      Winner prize: £3,000
      Runner up prize: £1,000

    • New Business Award

      This award recognises start-ups who are actively trading, have registered their business and have launched products or services in the past 24 months. This category is open to both businesses and social enterprises needing funding to achieve a specific goal and grow their start-up.

      Winner prize: £3,000
      Runner up prize: £1,000

    • Digital & Tech Award

      Some of the fastest growing businesses in the global economy in the last 5 years have been apps and online ventures. If you think that your app, hardware or online product has the potential to change the status quo, then we want to see your application.

      Winner prize: £3,000
      Runner up prize: £1,000

    • Creative & Design Award

      From crafts and music to marketing and publishing, the creative industries are exciting and varied. This category welcomes entries from those whose businesses require a creative flair or for someone looking to launch their freelance career.

      Winner prize: £3,000
      Runner up prize: £1,000

    • Social Impact & Green Business Award

      Is your business making the world a better place? This category is for ethically and environmentally conscious businesses that positively impact the society and/or the environment.

      Winner prize: £3,000
      Runner up prize: £1,000

    Each winner and runner-up will be given a place on the Catalyst 2019 summer accelerator to receive further training, plus be in with a chance to win a share of £30,000 cash prize (subject to completing the accelerator programme and pitching to win a share of this additional investment). Click here for more information about Catalyst.

    The FUEL Awards replace our previous Dragons’ Den competition. It’s organised by the Brookes Enterprise Support team and supported by Santander Universities UK. Interested in getting involved? FUEL is open to students and recent graduates of Oxford Brookes University. You can apply individually or as a team. Although community members can be included in the team, we require that the person leading the project and managing the funding is a Brookes student or recent graduate. You’ll also need to make sure you only submit projects that you have the right intellectual property (IP) rights for.

    • The prize for the winner of each category is £3,000 and runner-ups receive £1,000
    • a place on Catalyst 2019 summer accelerator to further develop your idea and pitch to win more funding
    • winners and runner-ups can also be selected to enter the Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards competition for a chance to win additional funding and support from Santander
    • earn points towards Brookes ID
    • access to ongoing support including mentoring.
    • This competition is open to Brookes students (including Oxford Brookes' partner colleges), staff and recent graduates (graduated within last 2 years)
    • Welcoming applications for pre-launch ideas and existing businesses (check out the categories)
    • Individuals and team applications are welcome
    • Download our information pack
    • Book a 1:1 consultation to receive guidance before you apply.
    • Download our information pack to get the full details
    • Submit your application using the online form below

    Apply now »

    • Attend our events to find build your founding team and boost your knowledge
    • Submit your application by 12 noon, Monday 18 February
    • Practice and perfect your pitch at a training workshop on Sunday 17 March
    • Pitch your idea to an audience and panel of judges in the Finals
    • Download our information pack to keep track of all these details
    • We recommend that you book a 1:1 consultation if you have any questions about the FUEL Awards or about developing your idea.
    Dates Description
    SEMESTER 1
    From September 2018 onwards Competition launches (promotion)
    SEMESTER 2
    Week 1
    30 January 2019
    Support & guidance before you submit your application
    Week 2
    6 February 2019
    Support & guidance before you submit your application
    Week 3
    13 February 2019
    Support & guidance before you submit your application
    Week 4
    18 February 2019
    22 February 2019
    1st round
    Application deadline
    Semi-finalists announced (up to 20)
    Week 5
    25 February - 1 March 2019
    2nd round
    Semi-Final
    Candidates interviews with judges (2 panels of 3 judges)
    Week 6
    6 March 2019
    Finalists announced (up to 10) and creating pitch deck
    Between week 6 and end of week 8
    6 - 22 March 2019
    Mentoring
    Week 7
    17 March 2019
    Storytelling and Pitching workshop
    Week 7
    13 - 20 March 2019
    Individual Pitch rehearsals
    Week 8

    20 March 2019

    22 March 2019


    Submit final version of written application
    Submit final version of pitch deck
    Week 9
    27 March 2019
    3rd round
    Finals
    Pitching event & Winners announced