ARU London News

Enterprise Hub: 12Ronnies Founders Festival

10th May 2022

On Thursday 5 May 2022, ARU London, in partnership with 12Ronnies Foundation, delivered its first Founders Festival under the umbrella of the university’s Enterprise Hub. It was well-attended with over 250 delegates in-person and online. 

The Festival brought together aspiring entrepreneurs to guide them through what they need to consider before launching a business. This was delivered via a series of educational TED-style talks covering all aspects of starting a business from idea inception and validation right through to legal considerations such as Intellectual property, product development and funding. There were 9 talks in total, followed by lively Q&A sessions and time and space for networking. The full programme can be viewed here: 

Our Principal, David Sexton, was delighted with its success, and commented: 'The event was a wonderful mix of entrepreneurs, aspiring business start-ups and experts, all working together to drive future businesses. A great place to network, explore ideas and meet fascinating people' 

Academic Director, Charles O’Dean expressed his pleasure with how the inaugural Founders Festival, a result of the collaborative partnership of ARU London and 12Ronnies, was so well attended and clearly enjoyed by participants and contributors. He stated: ‘This bodes well for future events and the development of a truly supportive business community.’ 

There was great feedback from the attendees, who were keen to continue their entrepreneurial journey. So, what’s next? 

  • The Enterprise Hub are delivering follow up workshops, including a panel event on marketing next month – even if you missed the Founders’ Festival, email to find out more. 
  •  12Ronnies will be offering a series of networking opportunities and providing students and alumni with access to a private Ideas Nest to capture their ideas in a secure and structured way so that mentors can help get them ‘launch-ready’.  
  • This will feed perfectly into the Start Up Hackathon which is scheduled over the weekend of 10-11 September, where we are aiming to launch 100 new businesses in 48 hours! If you missed the Founders Festival, but would like to be involved in the Hackathon please email 

Co-founder of 12Ronnies, Simon Krystman is already looking forward to delivering the Festival as an annual event. He stated: "The Founders Festival proved to be a great success both with the online and in-person attendees. The state-of-the-art venue supplied by our partner ARU London was the perfect setting for a very engaging event, with lots of talks, idea pitching and networking. So many new business ideas have been captured, ready for nurturing with experienced mentors. Given the success and level of interest for another Festival, we have already started planning for next year.”