A team of savvy young students from Banbridge Academy has landed its first major order with a Northern Ireland company after coming top in their regional heat of the Young Enterprise NI ‘Company Programme’ competition. They were also presented with the Company Growth Award.
Leading food company Moy Park has purchased 400 products from the student-led company, Poppin’, which sells pop sockets. These small, lightweight expanding grips can attach to most smartphones to offer protection against falls, aid grip to allow users to better access applications and take selfies, and act as a useful stand for mobile devices.
The group of ten Year 13 pupils are competing in the Young Enterprise Company Programme which aims to help young people deepen their understanding of how businesses work, while developing their team-building skills and confidence.
Commenting on the order, Brian Moreland, Corporate Responsibility Manager, Moy Park said,
“We were very impressed with the Poppin’ team’s business and commercial acumen, creativity and enthusiasm – traits which will stand these students in good stead as they embark on their respective career journeys. Programmes like this are a great way to help young people understand how business works and the role of companies in the community, while helping them appreciate how supply chains work. We are delighted to continue our support of Young Enterprise NI and its initiatives and we wish the Poppin’ company every success as they embark on the next stage of the competition.”
Following its successful order with Moy Park, Poppin’ are now in talks with other local businesses, building on its consumer campaign which has seen the team already sell 800 individual pop sockets. Currently Poppin’ has made further deals with Almac for 500 personalised popsockets and Mackle Pet Foods for 200 personalised pop sockets. The eager pupils are continuing to grow their business through online platforms and hope to progress through to the next round of the UK finals.
Banbridge Academy student and Poppin’ Managing Director Michelle Hamilton added; “Competing in the Young Enterprise Company Programme has been a fantastic experience and we are grateful to learn from some of NI’s most successful businesses. It’s been great to find out first-hand what it takes to start and run a company – from carrying out market research and financial planning to devising engagement strategies – and we look forward to the final in June.”