Dacorum’s Den gives businesses a boost

Dacorum Borough Council has awarded £10,000 in grant funding to the borough’s businesses that dared to step into Dacorum’s Den. The grants were funded by sponsorship from local businesses Epson, Abodebed and Sopra Steria.

Ten companies pitched to a panel of judges, which included the RT Hon Sir Mike Penning MP, who said: “I look forward every year to listening to the fantastic ideas that the entrepreneurs of Dacorum bring to us. The diversity and commitment of the bids show why this country has so many successful Small to Medium Enterprises. I’m very proud that Dacorum is leading in the way.”

Six companies were awarded grants of between £1,500 and £2,000 to help them develop a business idea.

In addition all six companies are granted a year’s complimentary membership of Hemel Hempstead Business Ambassadors.

The 2019 winners are:

VAP Games

VAP games, run by Jacqui Gahan, is a games company specialising in combining virtual/digital gaming with traditional board and card games. The idea is to modernise the family gaming concept with the incorporation of current technology and social media trends. The grant will be used to fund a video marketing campaign – using another winner, Big Head Content, to shoot the video.

Big Head Content

Big Head Content was created to help clients craft innovative and engaging video content to market their business. The company designs and produces videos to enable organisations to increase sales, brand awareness, product explanation or internal communications in an effective and memorable way. The grant will be used to help purchase a second iMac with the aim of doubling productivity, so it can serve more clients.

Castaway Cottage

This independent family owned and run company produces handmade bath bombs, wax melts, candles and soaps. The grant will enable the purchase of a bath bomb press, which will aid faster productivity to meet growing demand.

Home County Candle Co

This home fragrance brand (pictured above) features a range of hand-poured, scented soy candles and reed diffusers. Inspired by the Home County it is named after, each collection has its own unique fragrance – for example, the Hertfordshire range is scented with woodland bluebells and jasmine. Using the grant to purchase a specialised wax melter will increase manufacturing capabilities.  

Phoenix Entertainment

Phoenix Entertainment provides bespoke entertainment packages for the community and corporate sector. Acts include fire shows, stilt walking, magical costumes and themed characters, bringing life to events in a family friendly way. The grant will be used to bring its offering right up to date with the purchase of two pairs of Pixel Poi LEDs that display customisable graphics.

Song Writing 4 Kids

This online music education tool, for children aged between 8-13 years, teaches all the essential music symbols, how to read and write music and how to write a melody to their own song lyrics. The grant will be used to improve online presence through the website and social media.

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