Many people will shudder at words like "profit" and "creativity" being used in the same sentence, finding comparisons between the Creative and Financial sectors few and far between. In reality, these sectors are more alike than previously thought, as both industries are pretty much on par in terms of input into the economy, a fact we cannot overlook.
According to recent figures the creative industries contribute 6% of GDP in the UK and employ over two million people. It was found that the fashion industry alone was estimated to have directly contributed £20.9 billion to the UK economy. This is a sector that continues to grow and flourish with an almost 10% increase in 2012, outperforming all other sectors of UK and accounting for 10% of all British exports.
As the UK economy bounces back from the recession, this is an opportune moment for those with exciting and disruptive ideas to make a profit from their idea and help move the UK into a phase of economic growth driven by creative and innovative entrepreneurs.
The UK outperforms all it's European neighbours when it comes to creative industries and has always been a hotbed for creativity harbouring many of the best musicians, designers and artists the world has ever seen.
However, there is a massive dearth in support and recognition for this essential industry. Time and time again I meet amazing people who foster immense talent with innovative ideas who fall at the first hurdle when setting up their business as they don't have the practical knowledge about things like how to write a business plan, meet suppliers and secure sales which are essential when it comes to making a profitable business whatever the industry.
British designer Zoe Murphy set up her business whilst on my School for Creative Startups Programme. She is a perfect example of how someone can use their creativity and innovative ideas to set up a successful business. Printing onto recycled furniture and textiles using imagery inspired by her seaside hometown produces Zoe's unique, and now hugely popular, furniture.
For entrepreneurs such as Zoe it's vital that we provide them with a strong understanding of how to finance, design, run and grow their startups. At School for Creative Start Ups, entrepreneurs learn these and many more critical skills to equip them in the best possible way. As a culmination of the programmes, we host Makegood Festival, providing a platform to help creative businesses realise their potential. How do we do this? By connecting them with each of their key audiences in an exclusive environment; national and global press and retail buyers, angel investors and of course, the public who will go on to be their biggest advocates. We wrap all of that within a series of disruptive talks and discussions from those who've been there, done it, got the t-shirt and made a success such as Cath Kidston, Dan Germain of Innocent and Rob Shaw of Jack Wills who will all be speaking at the event. Our vision is to inspire the next generation of creative entrepreneurs by showing them the way to realising their dreams.
If Britain is truly committed to a sustainable economic recovery then we must nurture and support our creative talents, allow exciting ideas to flourish and become viable, sustainable businesses. This is absolutely achievable, we just need to give the creative industries the attention they deserve.
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ABOUT MAKEGOOD FESTIVAL:
Open to the public over three days from 30 May - 1 June at Old Selfridges Hotel, London.
Makegood is for any aspiring, budding or new entrepreneur thinking about taking the next step and those who love to discover the newest brands out there by meeting the masterminds behind 200+ new and original products. All of this whilst being utterly inspired by a whole host of the most incredible, creative entrepreneurs helping to celebrate the next generation of creativity.