Businesswoman to inspire new generation of entrepreneurs

A top Scottish businesswoman will share her experiences with University of Aberdeen students at an event to launch the annual Scottish Institute for Enterprise (SIE) Business Ideas Competition.

Sharon Bamford, who is the Founding Chief Executive of the UK India Business Council (UKIBC), a government sponsored body charged with representing business needs to enhance bilateral trade and investment between the UK and India, will speak at The Hub on Thursday (November 18) from 6.30pm.

Recently appointed CEO of the Association of MBA’s, the international impartial authority on postgraduate business education, Sharon will be talking to interested students about her business ventures, her current role and encouraging them to get involved in business creation.

The event will also mark the launch of the Scottish Enterprise Business Ideas competition, which invites students studying in Scotland to submit their business idea to be in with the chance to win cash prizes up to £1500.

From a new business or product to a way of making the world a better place, or even an entirely new invention, students from Aberdeen University are being invited to enter the initial regional leg of the competition before the deadline for submissions on December 10. Four finalists from the regional leg will be chosen to compete in the national final which will take place in February next year. The finalists will have the opportunity to continue their work with the SIE Regional Business Adviser, and develop their idea further.

Janice Montgomery, University of Aberdeen Careers Service said: "Sharon is a dynamic and inspiring serial entrepreneur who has founded and managed five start-up businesses since 1983 ranging from drilling services to a charity and will be an inspiration to students.

“The message we hope they will take away is to have belief in your business idea. Don't be discouraged, don't compromise your principles, know your market, value the people around you who are able to help, and be prepared to fail but keep going regardless as your idea may not just have the potential to win the competition, but also be a hugely successful company in the future."

The Scottish Enterprise Business Ideas competition is open to both postgraduate and undergraduate students. Entrants must submit their own details, the idea for their business and the kind of customers who might be interested in their product or service, on no more than one page of A4 and send it by email to before 10th December 2010.

For more information on the competition visit or Janice Montgomery, University of Aberdeen Career's Service on 01224 273053 or email

To register for this event, students and staff should sign up through the Careers Service website: