Burntwood Academy is representing Fulham Football Club in the Play-Offs of the Premier League Enterprise Challenge 2015/16, in the hope of reaching the Final in London and being crowned champions.
Twenty-nine school groups representing Premier League and Football League Clubs have made it through to this year’s Play-Offs. The business and skills based challenge is run by the Premier League and Sport Relief, which this year tasked pupils with working on a strategy to help encourage fans to spend more time at stadiums on match days. Six of these groups – one from each Play-Off – will progress to the Final, where they will go head-to-head to pitch their idea to a panel of judges from the world of sport and business.
The Play-Offs will this year be hosted by Stoke City, Newcastle United, Manchester City and Arsenal, with the latter two clubs each hosting two days of judging. The winning team from each day will then be invited to present at the Final in London on 9 March 2016.
Since its introduction in 2009, 10,000 young people aged between 13 and 17 have taken part in the programme which uses business models of professional football clubs to deliver enterprise education, with another 1,000 set to take part in this year’s competition.
Premier League Executive Chairman, Richard Scudamore, who set this year’s task, said: “I am sure this year’s challenge, our eighth, will produce even better ideas generated by even more enthusiastic and engaged young people. Our successful partnership with Sport Relief, Premier League and Football League clubs, to deliver education with football as the backdrop, continues to bring new and exciting entrepreneurs to the fore. I look forward to seeing the six Play-Off winning groups at the Final in March.”
Comic Relief Chief Executive Officer, Kevin Cahill, added: “We’re very proud to be working alongside the Premier League once again as part of this exciting initiative. The Premier League Enterprise Challenge uses the power of sport, in this case football, to engage and excite young people to learn about business. The skills they learn will be invaluable in later life and ultimately this is what Sport Relief is all about – bringing the entire nation together to help change lives.”
Businessman and Sport Relief supporter Theo Paphitis will be back in the Judges chair for the second Final in a row. He commented: “Enterprise is what I do, it's what I believe in. This scheme is excellent. We have got engagement, passion, community, entrepreneurship and youngsters. That's an incredibly powerful cocktail to send messages out to your community.”