Young entrepreneur Alex scoops top award

Sheffield College student Alex Gwynne

Sheffield College student Alex Gwynne

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NORTON College student Alex Gwynne has proved himself one of the country’s top young entrepreneurs.

At the age of 18, he won £40,000 worth of business and mentoring support in a national competition, receiving his prize in London from businesswoman and West Ham FC vice chairman Karren Brady, who was one of the judges.

He clinched the enterprise category of the Ambition AXA Awards to find the most talented 11-to-18-year-olds.

“It was a big surprise and I am absolutely over the moon,” said Alex, of Woodseats, who is studying three days a week for a foundation degree in graphic design at Norton College.

The course is equivalent to two years of an honours degree. Before that, Alex completed a BTEC media course at Norton College.

Alongside his studies, he has been developing his own business AG Paper Toys, creating three-dimensional paper characters that vary in height from a few inches to two metres.

With advice and support from the Sheffield College Enterprise Gateway, he has received several business, corporate and wedding commissions, is preparing for his first solo exhibition and is working on a book.

Alex was nominated by college enterprise start-up manager Deborah Bowers, who said: “Alex is an exceptional student, balancing his studies with starting up his own business, and an outstanding example of Sheffield’s young entrepreneurial talent.”

He received at least 40 hours of one-to-one support from business mentor Sean Macaskill.

lNatalie’s sports award, page 47.