North East entrepreneur wins business challenge

A North East entrepreneur is celebrating after being crowned the winner of a £1,000 business challenge

Nikita Hatfield
Nikita Hatfield

A North East entrepreneur is celebrating after being crowned the winner of a £1,000 business challenge.

Nikita Hatfield, 22, owner of Teesside fashion store Look Good Feel Good, entered the Metro Radio competition, run in conjunction with Virgin Money and open to over-18s, with a 300-word business pitch for her independent fashion store that began online.

Competing against seven other semi-finalists in the contest, also supported by the Project North East Group and Virgin Unite, Hatfield brought the Stockton-based business to life in front of a panel of enterprise experts beforebeing named among a shortlist of three.

It was then up to the three finalists to canvas for public votes via social media.

Hatfield, right, said of her triumph said: “I couldn’t believe it and thought it was a joke at first.

“I am delighted and plan to use the prize money to improve the range of clothes and accessories I stock, including a larger shoe range, more real and fake hair extensions and I’d like to introduce a size 14plus clothes range.”

Runners-up were Andy Stephenson’s Weekend Box Club and Shambo and Cheng’s LED T-shirts from Shambo Matia and Cheng Zeng.

Pete Wood, Virgin Money’s head of social enterprise projects, including the Start-Up Loans scheme in the North East and Cumbria, said: “We are delighted to be able to support driven young business minds in new and innovative ways, and this challenge has been part of that.

“All the business ideas that were submitted were great.”

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer