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Monday, 19. August 2019  

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Creative Business Catalyst


The Creative Business Catalyst pilot will partner business school students with creative businesses to catalyse business growth and stimulate innovation.  

Creative Business Catalyst aims to tap into the skill-base of UK business schools to exploit their experise in supporting the development of growth in the creative industries sector. The pilot project will pair MBA students with creative businesses to deliver a specialist, structured programme of business intervention and support.

The creative industries are vulnerable to many of the problems affecting small businesses across the economy. Business growth is hampered by:

  • a need to develop business management skills;
  • a need for creative firms to better understand how they can exploit the potential of their assets; and
  • how to communicate that more effectively to partners and potential investors.

A growing number of business schools are now offering MBA modules and executive education courses, of relevance to business leaders within the creative sector. This represents only a small part of the expertise available to creative businesses from within business schools. This pilot aims to link up with mainstream MBA teaching, providing students with access to growing businesses, in a way that offers direct benefit to creative businesses.

Business mentors, with experience of running creative businesses, will be engaged at key points of the process to provide strategic input.


Learn how you can participate in the pilot

UK business schools are invited to submit a proposal to participate in the pilot from autumn 2008 through to May 2009. Participation is open to all business schools, regardless of their experience of working with creative businesses.

Download the Call for Proposals document

Timetable for delivery

We expect to select 4-5 business schools to participate in the pilot by the end of September 2008.

An invitation to tender for delivery partners in each relevant region will be issued at the end of September. Delivery partners will manage the referral, business health-check, student-business matching, interim review and exit for businesses.

All delivery arrangements will be in place by the end of October. During the autumn term 2008, students will receive academic training in the principles of business growth. A pairing-up process, linking student teams with businesses, will take place in December 2008, with the project placements beginning in January 2009.

The business placement will last approximately 6-8 weeks, and will conclude with the production of a Business Assessment Report. This will be made available to the participating businesses and will form part of the formal review process for the student teams, counting towards their MBA programme.

For the businesses, this assessment will prepare them for appropriate next steps in business growth – this may be a direct link to a further accelerator programme, financial advice or specialist support in key areas







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