Cathay Craftz - 19 February
- 21 Feb 07, 04:50 PM
In a scheme that hopes to encourage a generation of new young entrepreneurs, 10,000 school children were given £10 for a month to see if they could make a profit.
Newsnight is following one scheme, Cathay Craftz, and its entrepreneurs are blogging their progress here on Talk About Newsnight.
Well... what an end to our half term! We went to the Chinese New Year festival in Chinatown and had a stall to sell all our origami products. It was a great success.
We had to meet Miss Miller and Miss Sarson at the Academy at 10:30am on Sunday morning and then we packed everything up and off we went. Setting up the stall was fun. We had lots of debates about how best to display the products, and how we should attract our customers. We were all a bit nervous at first, but we soon got into the spirit of things. Prabhjot and Marcelle did a great job of stopping people as they walked past and showing off our best-selling products. Yahui and Yidan were at the stall selling away and doing a roaring trade in Chinese calligraphy!
Once the festival got underway lots of people came to Chinatown. There were Lion and Dragon dancers and lots of firecrackers going off. Luckily the weather was dry... but a bit cold! It was interesting to see what items sold well. Our "Wishing Pots" and origami flowers sold very well and people bought lots of calligraphy too. We did "Happy New Year" messages with people's names on.
One of the highlights of the day was when some people actually recognised us after our appearance on Newsnight! We felt a bit like celebrities. It was nice that they were genuinely interested in how our business was coming on. We also got lots of positive feedback when we told people about the 'Make Your Mark with a Tenner' competition. People were impressed with what we'd done on only a budget of £40 between us. Some of them seemed surprised that you can achieve so much if you just put your mind to it. It just shows that setting up a business and being an entrepreneur is possible, even if you are still at school!
It was good to be representing not just Cathay Craftz but our school Manchester Academy and we are proud of ourselves. So thank you to all our customers on the day and to Manchester Science Park for underwriting the cost of the stall. We've just got to count up how much we made, but we think it is around £200. 7% of that is going back to the Science Park as interest on the stall loan, but even with that deduction it was a very profitable day.
Yidan, Marcelle, Prabhjot and Yahui