Propel is a programme for those entrepreneurs who have the greatest potential to start up and scale an export focused company, that is innovative and has the potential to become a significant exporter and employer.
Propel will accelerate the best business ideas through a tested methodology, so that at completion stage, participants will be able to pitch for investment and do business internationally.
The programme is delivered in two phases.
Entry to both stages is a competitive process, with 50% of phase one participants progressing to the second phase.
High Quality Workshops
A series of 12 workshops with highly relevant content and interaction will take you on a step-by-step skills development plan, delivered by leading practitioners and experts. Along the way you will receive support to develop your business and revenue model, understand new business models and develop your own business plan.
The workshops in Phase 2 are currently:
- Setting the scene, Market focus
- MVP and Innovation
- Developing your Strategy
- Stone Soup – How to make something from nothing
- Networking and Personal Brand
- Telling your Story
- Finance and Revenue Models
- Partnering in International Markets
- Leadership and Personality Styles
- Approach to Export Marketing
- Business Plan / Business Planning
- Pitching for Investment
Financial support of up to £20,000 is available to eligible participants who attend programme training and events and who achieve key milestones in Phase 2 of the programme.
The mentor team for the Propel programme is made up of experienced international entrepreneurs and executives who have impressive track records in building international businesses from a Northern Ireland or UK base.
Mentors will provide expert advice both on a one-to-one basis and within a team. They will be sourced specifically for each participant to ensure that the most appropriate match is made.
The role of the mentor will be to challenge and support participating entrepreneurs to develop sustainable and competitive businesses. The mentor will maintain a detailed working knowledge of the participant's business position and product or service and will support the development of a robust business plan. A key role of the mentor is to provide independent, professional one-to-one business advice on a confidential basis to participants.
Networking is at the core of Propel. The programme emphasises the power of making connections with the right people, partners and companies to accelerate your business idea. The Propel network will act as a social hub. We will invite key players across Northern Ireland to meet the Propel participants and will actively seek opportunities for participants to take part in networking opportunities.
Getting Investor Ready
Ultimately participants will get their business to a stage where they can pitch for private and institutional investment, taking with them a robust and tested business plan built on validation and research, but most of all progress.
We will provide advice and guidance in planning overseas visits to seek new opportunities and customers.
Shared working space is available for programme participants at The HUB, located in the heart of the Cathedral Quarter, Belfast. The space offers hot desks, private meeting rooms and opportunities for networking.