Centre for Entrepreneurs partners with Founders Forum to scale its NEF+ programme


Founders Forum and the Centre for Entrepreneurs have today announced a partnership to improve the UK’s entrepreneurship skills offering. Together, the two established and respected organisations will support and scale CFE’s flagship entrepreneurial development programme NEF+.

NEF+ in partnership with Founders Forum aims to drive the continued growth of the programme, increasing cohort sizes and frequency per year, as part of a broader shared mission to scale entrepreneurship skills across the UK.

In combining the expertise, skills and networks from the two organisations, the partnership will accelerate their work to support aspiring entrepreneurs, upskill the UK workforce by developing future business leaders, and improve access to entrepreneurship for diverse candidates by providing 30% of cohort places fee-free.

Brent Hoberman, co-founder and chairman of Founders Forum said:
“This joint approach is grounded in our belief that the UK needs to nurture a generation of founders to become the engine of growth for the British economy.

“While the tech sector goes from strength to strength, and there are a growing number of opportunities for technical training, the route to founder and/or operator remains less clear. The partnership will provide more pathways to entrepreneurship for aspiring founders and operators from all backgrounds”.

Neeta Patel, CEO of the Centre for Entrepreneurs said:
“This partnership will fuel our plans to scale the NEF+ programme in a game-changing way. The combination of our respective strengths, expertise and networks will deliver greater impact for the UK. I look forward to a mutually beneficial partnership with Brent and the Founders’ team”.

Through this partnership with Founders Forum and its family of businesses, the award-winning young entrepreneur development programme NEF+ will increase its reach as a result of the combined brand of the two organisations. The joining of these two community-driven organisations, which will include co-locating teams, will also bolster the content of the programme with access to FF’s impressive network of thought leaders.

The Founders Forum group of businesses exists to serve entrepreneurs at every stage of their journey: from idea to exit. In partnering, NEF+ will strengthen FF’s offering at the front end of the founder’s journey by providing established programmes for aspiring founders both from across its own communities (including accelerateHER, colorintech and Founders of the Future) and beyond.

Building on Founders Forum and Informa Tech Founders’ suite of education products that include Elevating Founders, Founders of the Future etc., the partnership will also provide a solution for scale-ups and corporates looking to upskill their employees.

The collaboration will create a positive talent flywheel for both organisations. NEF+ participants will gain access to exceptional mentorship and job opportunities within the Founders Forum ecosystem and outgoing NEF+ founders will be able to leverage both networks for funding opportunities.

Lastly, by collaborating with Founders Forum, CFE will gain access to a robust platform for fundraising, building upon FF’s existing links to major corporates, funds and government, to help ensure the longevity of the NEF+ programmes.

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About the programme: NEF+ in partnership with Founders Forum
The NEF+ programme, which will be rebranded ‘NEF+ in partnership with Founders Forum’ will build on the current programme and expand its offer to new types of applicants. There will be two cohorts each year with up to 50 participants per cohort.

The new programme will be open to candidates sponsored by their employer, direct entry candidates who will pay a fee, and candidates from under-represented groups (up to 30% of each cohort), who will be fully subsidised.

The programme content and structure will be relevant for candidates in the early stage of their careers and first-time founders.

How to apply
The first NEF+ in partnership with Founders Forum programme will run in June 2021. Register your interest to be notified when applications open in April.