LinkBridge team

From left: Adam Knight, Louise Wray, Yahya Khojbalwala and Kia Whitehead

Management students from the University of Bolton were praised as they collected awards at the national finals of a major enterprise award.

Adam Knight, Louise Wray, Yahya Khojbalwala and Kia Whitehead won two awards for Marketing Excellence and Student Journey, in the UK final of the Young Enterprise Awards 2019 at Chessington World of Adventures Resort, Surrey.

The winning team had set up a business called ‘LinkBridge’, to develop a mobile app connecting people with businesses in Bolton town centre.

The Marketing Trust’s Marketing Excellence Award was presented to the team after it was judged as the best finalist for overall marketing.

Louise, who is the Managing Director of LinkBridge, won the Student Journey Award for demonstrating “infectious enthusiasm, undying dedication and positivity through all aspects of life”.

The judges felt LinkBridge had demonstrated marketing excellence and identified a real marketing need that they had addressed. They said LinkBridge had also established good partnerships, including working with their community to regenerate the High Street.

The LinkBridge mobile app will be available to Bolton town centre businesses with information about store offers and features such as promotional buttons and maps of the town centre to allow customers to plan their shopping experience.

Nigel Coates from the Marketing Trust said: “With high streets across the UK currently at risk of becoming obsolete and the increasing number of businesses ceasing trading, LinkBridge aims to provide a solution by working in partnership with local councils to enable service-based business to collaborate, to engage the public with the High Street by increasing foot traffic for all retailers.

“If the LinkBridge app is successful for Bolton, this business model could be applied to other towns in the UK.”

The University of Bolton has been running the Start-Up programme with Young Enterprise for several years as part of an Entrepreneurship module. It inspires university level students across the country to set up and run a real business or social enterprise over an academic year.

Dr Fredrick Agboma, Senior Lecturer at the university, said: “We are delighted that the team has won two national awards. The students thoroughly deserve their success.”

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