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Jul 05, 2016

Dragons' Den brings out Nelson's top young entrepreneurs

The YES annual competition saw the top ten teams of high school students from around the region address the dragons on Tuesday night.

04 07 2016

A new and improved way to use burley, a natural pre-workout formula and social media for musicians were all ideas pitched to four business innovators at the Dragons' Den regional finals. 

The winning team from Waimea College came up with Infinito, an idea to sell advertising on coffee cup sleeves. 

Infinito head of finance Taylor Larking said its idea "capitalises on our coffee culture" in New Zealand. 

"Essentially we sell advertising space onto coffee cup sleeves which are then distributed around the region," she said. 

"The average person holds onto their coffee for 37 minutes, not only does this mean the primary drinker will see your advert in this time but other people will also see your advert." 

The team of three, who were the only Year 12 finalists, planned to donate a percentage of their profit to Special Olympics Nelson. 

Chief executive Ella Baskin said Infinito had been a challenging effort. 

"It took so much time, nights, studies, anytime we could get, probably in a few classes we would squeeze it in too." 

Head of marketing Jamie Couper said they were "just really stoked". 

Councillor Pete Rainey, young entrepreneur Rees Vinsen, private investor Noel Eichbaum and Oxygen Skincare founder Alana Riley were the dragons who asked the tough questions of the businesses. 

Rainey said he was "really impressed" by the talent and ideas that he saw. 

"Some great ideas and you know, it's really hard to get on stage and present in front of people, a lot of those kids probably haven't done that before so well done," he said. 


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