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Competition for digital entrepreneurs returns

Business | Published:

DIGITAL Jersey and NatWest International are calling for all local digital entrepreneurs looking for support and office space to apply for a competition which has already helped propel two start-ups to business success.

Tom Le Sueur and Sam Bullock from Snap and Tim McGuinness from Virtex Studio (21520604)

The winners of the competition will receive a year’s free Small Business membership to the Digital Jersey Hub, as well as a permanent desk space for one year.

The initiative from NatWest International and Digital Jersey has already helped last year’s winners, Snap Creative, owned by Tom Le Sueur and Sam Bullock and Virtex Studios owned by Tim McGuinness, develop their own successful companies.

One year later Snap Creative has provided services to a number of local businesses, including Stinky Bay Brewing Co, Skipton Open Studios 2018 and Confidence Dental. They have a full-time employee starting in May and are now looking to employ five freelance workers to cope with their increasing workload.

In the past 12 months, Tim from Virtex Studios has employed a full time Virtual Reality developer and has worked with Jersey Heritage to bring La Cotte de St Brelade alive through VR. He has also helped Autism Jersey raise awareness of what it’s like to be autistic through a VR experience.

After meeting in the Digital Jersey Hub, they collaborated to launch Flux, combining creative arts with virtual reality to launch the Channel Islands’ first mixed-reality art exhibition. The event will be running again this year, collaborating with established local artist, Nicolas Romeril.

Both businesses are about to move from the Digital Jersey Hub into their own shared offices and now the hunt is on for two new digital start-ups to fill the desks.

‘The two winning entries have highlighted the innovative and energetic talent we have in this island,’ Tony Moretta, chief executive of Digital Jersey, said.

‘It’s quite astounding what the two companies have achieved in just one year. A lot of what they’re now working on has resulted in their meeting in the DJ Hub, showing the value of this co-working and networking space. Ultimately, this competition provides not just a win for these two businesses, but also for Jersey’s economy.’

Joe Vasey, head of Premium and Business Banking, NatWest International, said that the bank was delighted to be supporting the competition for the second year.

‘It’s amazing to see how much these businesses have developed over the last 12 months,’ he said. ‘We’re entering a really exciting time in the digital market and if you think your business has what it takes to be the next big thing in this industry, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I’d highly recommend applying.’

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