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The Kingston e-Incubator is a 9 to 12 month programme that helps to guide students and recent graduate-entrepreneurs through the process of launching and developing new business ventures, from ideation to feasibility to market launch.
The programme will help participants to:
Participants can expect to:
To take part in this programme, you must be a current student or recent KU graduate (within the past 3 years) with a business idea and completed basic market research, and agree to commit to at least 2 hours per week on development of their business idea – with a head for success!
DKC SKIN – natural skincare essentials
Caribbean Bakers – authentic Caribbean bakery
Foods Squared – healthy meal preparation, snack and juice provider
Shehaj Fitness – high-quality gym equipment
Infinite Closet – clothing rental service
Trusted Trainers – connecting personal trainers with new clients
Manni Virdee – online beauty content
Blue Note Coffee House
KK COMM (Kingston Communications) is a student-led marketing and advertising agency. The business started with committed students who were keen to develop themselves and to attain professional experience alongside their studies, through exploring the real life work environment. The company currently has 12 student members and some graduates.
Their motto is to 'Learn, Share & Help': Learn from hosting events, working with businesses as consultants and doing industry trips; Share and Help by hosting events and inspiring other students to engage, network and learn new skills. K COMM's business model is to grow and develop. Their key aim is to host industry talk events and workshops for students in university to boost student engagement and to give the opportunity for self-development. The company's mission is helping students to get mentoring and give everyone the opportunity to share and learn new skills, such as Photoshop, google ads or search engine optimization.
From the humble beginnings, organising photoshoots for LinkedIn profiles, their reputation within the Business School has grown. They hosted an industry talk event with guest speaker Jessica Richards, a well-known influencer, who shared her story and how LinkedIn helped her career. Beside their successful social media campaign; K COMM has been involved in multiple projects within the university and offered their service in events, such as the Global Citizenship Programme, KUWEN and the E-incubator. K COMM's key roles were to help to create branding including logo design, slogans, leaflets, email and Powerpoint templates and were responsible for the whole sphere of advertising of these events.
"I started K COMM to allow students like me to gain professional business experience while sill being in the safe environment of university, where we are allowed to make mistakes and be guided by our faculty mentors. At K COMM we are continuously challenging ourselves to get better and inspire others to do so as well." - Rohin Punjabi, Founder of K COMM
According to the founders, K COMM would not have reached this milestone without receiving mentoring from the KBS' academic staff throughout the years. The immense support enabled them to build their business presence in and outside the university and K COMM is now planning on offering marketing consultancy services to start-ups and local businesses. They aim to reach out and open their doors to students from other faculties such as the Kingston School of Art or Science, Engineering and Computing; giving them the opportunity to learn, extend their portfolio by working on real-life business projects. K COMM believes that with the integration, more students will have the opportunity to achieve their professional aspirations, build connections and go to the workforce with valuable skills on their hands after their graduation.
"Personally, as a Graphic Designer, I want to learn more about the marketing and the business side of design through working with K COMM. I work with marketing students and other students from different disciplines, so we learn together, skill-share, and teach each other in order to grow ourselves. As the Head of Design, I want to help build K COMM and the projects we do into visually recognisable, cohesive brands that convey the values which we want to represent." - Linda Harmaala, Head of Design
KBS MBA Graduate Barbara Salvador (along with her husband) founded their IT Consultancy business Salvador Cloud in 2018. Salvador Cloud offers DevSecOps services including Cyber Security, Compliance Monitoring, Kubernetes Security and Disaster Recovery.
According to Barbara, the road to success was a continuous journey and the Kingston Business School played a vital part in her business development. The MBA gave her the courage to start her own business and during her studies she attended numerous events such as KUWEN panels and the Human Face of Venture Capital to gain insight about the field and to build her business network.
Her MBA modules helped her to develop an entrepreneurial mindset. She found the presentations of the guest speakers very insightful and important because they were giving their personal experiences which she could learn from. She believes that the MBA was the "perfect mix" of academic work and real life experience. The framework she learnt within the classroom she can now apply to her business.
The mentorship she received at the KBS in her last 6 months she found invaluable and it gave her direction. The advice received was helpful and her mentor gave her contacts of external business professionals, so she could progress with the marketing and branding of her business. She is positive about the future of Salvador Cloud. She sees the business growing in the next couple of years and hopes to become a team of 10 people who can help at least 5 clients at a time.
"My advice to students who wish to start their own business is to hold on to all the help that university provides and not to give up before trying. Before starting my MBA I did not have an entrepreneurial mindset. But through the inspiring guest speakers and the support from Yuliana, I have developed this mindset. My MBA journey was a real life opening experience and I can only thank the KBS and Yuliana for all the support." - Barbara Salvador - Founder of Salvador Cloud
Please email Dr Yuliana Topazly at Y.Topazly@kingston.ac.uk if you would like more information about the e-Incubator programme.