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Explore a business idea: programme and competition

Test the potential of your business or social enterprise idea in eight free, interactive evening sessions. You'll then get the chance to pitch for a substantial cash prize.

Use recognised tools and techniques to turn your idea into a viable business venture.

In a series of practical sessions you’ll work alongside other entrepreneurs to sharpen your skills, stress test your ideas and establish a market for your business or social enterprise.

Date, time and place

We run the Explore programme every term over eight weeks.

Start date: 15 October 2019 
Time: Tuesdays, from 5pm to 7pm
Place: UCL BaseKX, 103c Camley Street, London N1C 4PF

Who it’s for

You’ll be a UCL student, recent graduate or member of staff.

You’ll need to:

  • show you’re keen to build the knowledge and skills required for a startup
  • have a business idea that you want to develop

Don’t have a business idea yet? You can still apply but you'll need to attend our one-day pre-explore boot camp, Imagine.

Businesses already in the Hatchery incubator or endorsed for a Start-up or Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa won’t be able to apply. 

What you’ll cover

We’re continually evolving this programme to reflect changes in the marketplace. 

However, this programme will cover how to:

  • build a successful business or social enterprise
  • develop your business confidence and skills
  • clarify and refine your business idea
  • put key business metrics in place
  • develop key relationships
  • market your business idea
  • find and secure funding

Make sure you can pitch for the prize

At the end of the programme you'll have the chance to pitch for a substantial cash prize to take your idea further. It’s not compulsory but it’s a great way to practise your presentation skills.

To qualify you’ll need to:

  • attend 75% of the sessions
  • show how you’ve developed and validated your idea

Apply for the programme

To apply, you'll need to complete the online application form by 9am on Friday, 27 September 2019. 

If you're part of a team, only one member of the team needs to apply.

Apply for Explore

About the lead facilitator

This programme is led by Caroline Broad, Director of Broad Associates Ltd. Broad Associates specialises in delivering interactive workshops for researchers looking to develop their innovation and entrepreneurship skills.

About the funder

The prize funding for this programme is generously provided by UCL alumnus and philanthropist George Farha.


Read our privacy notice to understand how UCL Innovation & Enterprise will deal with your personal data.

UCL Innovation & Enterprise reserves the right to make changes to the programme, location and/or speakers without prior notice. Such alterations are occasionally necessary due to circumstances beyond our control.