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Popup Business School

What do shopping centres and single mums have in common?

31 July 2017 10:00


Hammerson plc has teamed up with Pop Up Business School to deliver start-up training to thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs across The United Kingdom and Ireland. From September to December 2017 a number of Hammerson shopping centres including Cabot Circus, Bristol, Westquay, Southampton, Silverburn, Glasgow and Highcross, Leicester will play host to aspiring entrepreneurs. For two weeks in each venue the Pop Up Business School will teach members of the public how to start their own business from scratch.

Since 2011, Pop Up Business School has been travelling around the country helping people learn the necessary skills to start their own business. However, the advice is radically different to ‘traditional’ enterprise support. The School doesn't preach bank loans or business plans, instead it focuses on getting students to make returns first.

The magic of the events comes from holding them in shopping centres, where the participants can come up with the idea at the back of the room and just walk to the front to start selling. At the Croydon event in the Whitgift Centre last year 43% of participants made their first sale before the workshop had even finished.

Students are typically from ‘hard to reach’ backgrounds including single parents, refugees, ex-offenders and those on jobseekers allowance. 67% of participants at the Croydon event were female and a large amount were single parents looking to create an extra income. By opening its shopping centres to Pop Up Business School, Hammerson gave them the opportunity to start.

1. Bolton - September 25th - October 6th 2017 (Venue TBC)
2. Whitgift Centre – Croydon – 25th September to 6th October 2017 
3. Silverburn - Glasgow - October 9th to October 20th 2017 
4. Brent Cross - Barnet - October 23 to November 3rd 2017
 5. Cabot Circus - Bristol - October 23rd to November 3rd 2017  
6. HighCross - Leicester - November 6th to November 17th 2017
7. O2 Academy - Birmingham - November 6th - November 17th 2017  
8. Cyfarthfa Shopping Park - Merthyr Tydfil - November 13th to November 17th 2017
9. West Quay - Southampton - December 4th to December 15th 2017 
10. Dundrum Town Centre - Dublin - December 11th to December 15th 2017 
11. Union Square - Aberdeen - TBC 
12. The Orchard Centre – Didcot - TBC 
 13. The Oracle - Reading - TBC 
14.  Hounslow - London - TBC 
15.  Kirkgate Market - Leeds -  TBC 

Co-founder, Alan Donegan said “Working with Hammerson and its shopping centres has changed the game of business startup support. We have gone from a process of months for starting up to people making their first sale in just a few days! Working with Hammerson has given entrepreneurs a unique opportunity to launch their businesses quickly and in doing so the business is making a true difference in people’s lives

Jon Brookes, Community Manager at Hammerson Plc, said “Hammerson is committed to supporting the local communities around our centres and the partnership with Pop Up Business school is a fast, smart and hard hitting way to do so, whilst helping to create new and exciting businesses”

About Hammerson Plc
Hammerson is a FTSE 100 owner, manager and developer of retail destinations in Europe. Our portfolio of high-quality retail property has a value of around £10 billion and includes 23 prime shopping centres, 18 convenient retail parks and investments in 19 premium outlet villages, through our partnership with Value Retail and the VIA Outlets joint venture. Key investments include Bullring, Birmingham, Bicester Village, Oxfordshire, Dundrum Town Centre, Dublin and Les Terrasses du Port, Marseille.

About PopUp Business School

Frustrated by the traditional approach to starting up, co-founders Alan Donegan and Simon Paine, decided to challenge the system when they set up five years ago. Forget suits, ties and briefcases. PopUp Business School is all about offering BIG opportunities to every member of society, from lone parents to the unemployed, people with disability and ex-offenders, NEETs and other disadvantaged members of the community.

PopUp Business School is the polar opposite of tried and tested approaches to enterprise support. Rather than preach the importance of business plans, company structures and loan funding, Donegan and Paine turn this model on its head to achieve far greater results. Using a combination of the latest online business models and a rapid approach to sales, PopUp Business School is fast, smart and seriously hard hitting and their results speak for themselves.

Notes to editors:

The PopUp Business School was founded in 2011 to give business and enterprise skills to people that need it the most

The PopUp Business School approach is the complete opposite to traditional start-up support

The PopUp Business School focuses on harder-to-start people (e.g. low income, unemployed, people with a disability, single parents, ex-offenders)

98% of participants experience a significant boost in their confidence, business skills and ability to make things happen.

Twitter: @popupbusiness



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About Popup Business School

Founded in 2011, The PopUp Business School is a business school that is the polar opposite of 'traditional' enterprise support. PopUp Business School travel around the U.K teaching people how to start businesses. They don't believe in loans, business plans or complex financial forecasts. They focus on sales and making money.

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