SPEED Plus - Be your own boss

 ‌‌speed plus logo


Have you got a business idea or a hobby that you’d like to turn into a business
but need help and support to get it going?

Would you like to create your own job and work for yourself?

If the answer is yes, then apply for our business start-up project
SPEED Plus and be your own boss!


What is SPEED Plus?

SPEED Plus is a 6 month, part-time business start up project which offers Keele students, graduates, alumni and staff, plus other graduates returning to the West Midlands region, the opportunity to develop their idea or hobby into a business. We are currently working on the details of the programme. As soon as they have been finalised, they will be published on this page, so please keep checking back in the new year!

What does it offer?

If you are offered a place on SPEED Plus at Keele, you may receive:

  • Up to 10 business development workshops
  • Up to 10 hours of one-to-one business consultancy sessions with a business expert/specialist
  • The opportunity to bid for grant funding (as its a grant you do not pay it back) to help you get started
  • The opportunity to have a business address on Keele Science & Business Park for up to one year
  • The opportunity to have access to a hot-desk in the Nova Centre incubator on Keele Science & Business Park for 6 months
  • Networking and additional business development and funding opportunities
  • Access to a large network of support and assistance to guide you along the way 

When does it start & finish?

To be confirmed.

How much time will I have to commit?

You will be required to attend a 2-day induction event (venue to be confirmed), up to 10 afternoon workshops, and 2 review meetings (to be arranged).  

Attendance Required

Cohort 5

Induction Day 1 (all day) To be confirmed
Induction Day 2 (all day) To be confirmed
Workshop 1: Branding, PR, Logos and Straplines To be confirmed
Workshop 2: Market Research & Marketing To be confirmed
Workshop 3: Planning, Business Finance & Record Keeping To be confirmed
Workshop 4: Developing a Business Plan To be confirmed
Workshop 5: Legal Contracts To be confirmed
Workshop 6: E-commerce To be confirmed
Workshop 7: Cloud Services for Business To be confirmed  
Workshop 8: Insurance & Networking To be confirmed 
Workshop 9: To be confirmed To be confirmed
Workshop 10: To be confirmed To be confirmed


What will be expected of me?

In addition to attending the above events, you will be required to draft an Action Plan, a business plan, submit 2 Progress Reports, and an End of Project Review.  You will be issued with the deadline dates for these during your induction. You will also be required to complete and sign certain documents as directed by the SPEED Plus Project Team.

You are required to register as self employed with HMRC or Incorporate with Companies House during your Induction.  

Failure to attend all workshops, registering your business on time or providing the required documents may result in your funding (if available) being reduced or you being withdrawn from the programme and any funding already spent being paid back.

Who can apply?

The programme will be availble to ALL students and staff and graduates from Keele. Further eligibility details will be availble here soon.


You may apply if you are one of the following:

  • an undergraduate of Keele University
  • a postgraduate student
  • a member of staff
  • an alumnus of Keele University
  • a graduate of another university who are living in the West Midlands
  • someone with a connection to Keele University

Please note: We cannot accept applications from anyone who has already incorporated their company, registered with HMRC or is already trading. 

How do I apply for SPEED Plus?

We are now closed for application to the SPEED Plus project. However we expect to start advertising with more programme details in February 2015. So, please keep checking this page for updates.  


Is there a deadline for applications?

There will be a deadline for applications, this has yet to be confirmed. 

What happens next?

If you are shortlisted, you will be invited to present your business idea to a panel of friendly judges, times and venues will be arranged nearer the time. You should indicate your preferred date(s) on your Application Form.  You will be required to bring 2 passport photos with you, with your name clearly printed on the reverse. You may also wish to bring samples or visuals to show to the panel. 

Those who are selected by the judges to participate in SPEED Plus will be notified in writing, confirming the details for the 2-day Induction event.

How do I access the funding?

If you are successful, this will be discussed in detail during induction.  There is no guarantee of funding, however if funding is offerered, it can only be used to pay for goods/services to help you start your business.  You apply before you make any purchase, then, once approval has been given, you buy the goods yourself and after we receive your receipts we reimburse you - usually within 2 weeks of receiving your completed claim.  No expenditure prior to being accepted onto SPEED Plus or without the approval of an Application for Funding Form will be reimbursed.


Once finalised, further details on the programme will be added onto this page, so please keep checking in the new year. If you need any further information, please email the team at speedplus@keele.ac.uk 



European Regional Development Fund