The Portsmouth Academy takes home Overall Winner Award at Apprentice Vs Dragons’ Den 2023/24 final

Article summary: Team ‘E-Kitchen’ won the £500 prize as the overall winning product, after pitching an app designed to reduce food waste.

Last Monday, February 5, we held our third ‘Apprentice Vs Dragons’ Den’ final, marking the start of National Apprenticeship Week 2024. The annual school engagement competition sees teams of secondary school students from across the south come up with a product idea which solves one of modern life’s problems.

The teams are tasked with the design, manufacture, marketing and distribution of their product, and must also demonstrate their predicted profits and returns.

After starting the brainstorming process before last year’s summer holidays, the final 5 teams were shortlisted and given the opportunity to present their product ideas to our panel of Dragons at the grand finale.

This year’s final welcomed teams from The Portsmouth Academy, Castle View Academy, Horndean Technology College and The Academy Selsey, who presented their inspirational solutions to problems such as ocean pollution, support for student mental health and neurodivergence, food waste and the cost of living.

The panel of Dragons deciding the teams’ fate consisted of: Tony Mason, Vice President CFO at PALL Corporation, Kelly Sunderland, European HR Employment Law and Training Director at PEI Genesis, James Sessions, Chief Financial Officer at Prysmian Group, Ian McCrindle, UK Engineering & Operations Training Manager at DP World Southampton, and PETA CEO, Fiona Stilwell.

There were 5 awards in total, with each winner receiving £100 in vouchers, and the overall winner received £500 in vouchers. The winners of the night were as follows: 

  • Overall Apprentice Vs Dragons Den Winner: Team “E-Kitchen” from The Portsmouth Academy (Ella Rose, Emily Rose, Zainab Rai and Veronica-Mae Clarke)
  • Best Presentation: Team “Safe Wings” from The Portsmouth Academy (Kamsi Uzuwanwu, Lesley-Jane Otitjou, Adetilewa Adegunju and Clinton Olowonawu)
  • Best Design: Team “Eternal Bus” from Castle View Academy (Zoe Atyeo, Lily Dale, Ralph Jerams and Jessica Stiller)
  • Best Business Plan: Team “Intheal” from Horndean Technology College (Elliot Robson, Dexter Ludlow, Ella Rogers and Enola Craig)
  • Most Original Concept: Team “Neuro” from The Academy Selsey (Lewis Hogan, Matty Mavers, Chloe Parker, Charlie Ross and Torryn Whitfield) 

School Engagement Officer, Emma Quance, supported the teams throughout the process with workshop sessions and said the teams should be proud of what they have achieved.

‘Huge congratulations to all the finalists at Apprentice vs Dragon’s Den! You could see the huge effort each team put into each stage of the project, and it was unbelievable to see them present so confidently to our panel of Dragons! This event really highlights how challenging and yet highly rewarding an apprenticeship can be.’