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Scottish EDGE launches Creative EDGE Award

Published: 17 Aug 2017

Scottish EDGE

Scottish EDGE launches special award to target applicants from the Creative Industries.

Scottish EDGE, Scotland’s leading competition to identify and support the nation’s most promising entrepreneurial talent, is launching a special award today – the Creative EDGE Award – in partnership with Creative Scotland and the Cultural Enterprise Office to encourage applications from the creative sector.

The Creative EDGE Award will be a prize of up to £100,000 – 60% loan and 40% grant – for the top creative business idea in rounds 11 and 12 of the Scottish EDGE competition.

Scottish EDGE has made 300 awards to date, totaling over £9.5 million while helping to create over 950 jobs and boosting turnover of awardee companies by £57 million while helping them to secure an additional £55 million in investment.  

Alumni success stories from the creative sector include Trtl, whose sleep scarf is the bestselling travel pillow on Amazon in the US and UK, Looblade, a reinvention of the toilet brush which has now been exported to over 100 countries and cycling clothing business, Findra, who recently opened their first shop in the Borders. Round 10 winners in June 2017 include Corien Staels of Staels Design who has developed the Wheelair cushion to cool wheelchair users.

We know that Scotland has a wealth of creative talent across the performing and visual arts, design, crafts and creative technology and that there is a real appetite to turn this creative motivation into new kinds of businesses- Clive Gillman, Creative Scotland

Scottish EDGE launched Round 11 last week with the final planned for 14th December where up to £1.3 million in grant and loan funding will be awarded to around forty Scottish startups.  Scottish EDGE itself is supported by the Royal Bank of Scotland, The Hunter Foundation and the Scottish Government.  

Fiona Hislop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs said: “An exciting future lies ahead in this fast growing business sector providing opportunities internationally for our wide and diverse creative industries.”

David Shearer, Chairman, Scottish EDGE said: “There is a misconception that innovative, high-growth business have to come from the science or technology sector but we’ve had some amazing success stories with businesses from the creative industries.  This award will allow us to highlight those businesses and encourage applicants from the creative industries to come forward for support and funding from Scottish EDGE.”

Rachael Brown, CEO of the Cultural Enterprise Office said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with Scottish EDGE. I believe passionately that Scotland is one of the best places in the world to start and grow a creative business. The creative sector needs to be nourished, developed and supported in order to achieve its full potential and this award demonstrates our commitment to working with creative entrepreneurs.”

Clive Gillman, Director of Creative Industries at Creative Scotland said: “We’re really pleased to be joining the Scottish EDGE partnership to support exciting new creative ideas to be developed into successful businesses. We know that Scotland has a wealth of creative talent across the performing and visual arts, design, crafts and creative technology and that there is a real appetite to turn this creative motivation into new kinds of businesses. The financial and developmental support on offer through Scottish EDGE is a great way to help transform this ambition into successful creative enterprise.”

About Scottish EDGE

Scottish EDGE is a competition aimed at identifying and supporting Scotland’s up-and-coming, innovative, high-growth potential entrepreneurial talent.

Scottish EDGE is made up of four categories; Scottish EDGE, for companies of all sectors and stages; Higgs EDGE, a special technology award aimed at entrepreneurs who have an engineering, science or technology based business and have a product, or product under development, which is scalable and capable of globalisation; Young EDGE, for companies where all directors are under the age of 30; and Wild Card EDGE, for companies who are currently pre-trading.

Historically, Scottish EDGE was run by Scottish Enterprise alongside various partners.  However, in August 2014 the Royal Bank of Scotland and Sir Tom Hunter, through the Hunter Foundation, agreed to extend the success of the fund and lead in its delivery going forward with support from the Scottish Government.

David Shearer chairs the Scottish EDGE board with directors from the Hunter Foundation and the Royal Bank of Scotland, alongside an Advisory Board drawn from our partners in Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise, Highlands & Islands Enterprise, Business Gateway, Entrepreneurial Scotland, Social Investment Scotland and Prince’s Trust.

To date, Scottish EDGE awarded over £9 million. This has resulted in the creation of 981 jobs with the winners generating an additional £57.23 million in turnover and securing £55.17 million in additional investment.

Winners of Scottish EDGE benefit from:

  • Funding of up to £100,000 with Scottish EDGE.  40% of this is a pure prize and 60% is a loan which will be used to support the next entrepreneur in line for support
  • Up to £10,000 grant with Young EDGE for 18-30 year olds
  • Up to £10,000 grant with Wild Card EDGE for pre-trading
  • Signposting to alternate funding and funders where appropriate.
  • Business Training.
  • Mentoring and support from a mature entrepreneur accessed through the Entrepreneurial Scotland mentoring programme.
  • Access to support via our partners Business Gateway, Scottish Enterprise, Highlands & Islands Enterprise, Social Investment Scotland and the Prince’s Trust
  • Pitch training delivered by ESpark, Business Gateway and Elevator in Dundee and Aberdeen.
  • Enrolment into the EDGE Alumni programme where you will get access to events, peer to peer learning and training to enhance your skills and give something back.
  • Packages of support from leading business support organisations such as Harper Macleod, Johnston Carmichael and James Hallam plus the chance to learn from and connect with experts from world renowned organisations such as Microsoft and Virgin Media Business at the Scottish EDGE Final.

Media enquiries should be directed to Jack Proctor - Marketing and Comms Manager, jack.proctor@scottishedge.com, +44 (0) 7956868842, or Evelyn McDonald - CEO, evelyn.mcdonald@scottishedge.com, +44 (0) 7866 770708.