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The Unilever Young Entrepreneurs Awards

Ideas that can change the world for the better

At Unilever we believe the world will only succeed in delivering the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals if we all start to think and work differently. That means a real shift towards meaningful partnerships and collaboration across the whole range of players – from governments to NGOs, and big businesses to start-ups. Imagine what we can achieve together.

That’s why five years ago we started the Unilever Young Entrepreneurs Awards to recognise and support brilliant young innovators tackling the planet’s biggest environmental and social challenges, and to help them achieve scale for impact.

Since the launch of the Awards in 2013, we’ve reached over 3,500 inspiring young sustainability entrepreneurs and their organisations, and provided tailored support and funding to 29 winners. From simple solutions with far reaching impacts for child nutrition, to ground breaking technologies to cut greenhouse emissions, these changemakers are challenging business as usual and leading the way to a more sustainable future.

Each year we provide up to 8 winners with financial support to help them grow – with the overall winner of the HRH The Prince of Wales Young Sustainability Entrepreneur Prize receiving €50,000. All winners attend a residential Accelerator Programme run by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership, followed by a year of mentoring support completely tailored to their needs.

That could range from business support through to personal development coaching – whatever is most needed to help that entrepreneur and their business succeed. And where it’s right for both sides, we’ll support the entrepreneur to open doors and make new business connections – whether that’s within Unilever or elsewhere.

We know that the world’s problems will only be solved with the ideas and talents of a new generation of leaders and changemakers who are challenging business as usual, and who are the future of sustainability. We see a big opportunity to support, inspire, reward and collaborate with them, to help them scale and grow – both as individuals and as enterprises.

Record number of entries in 2018

The 2018 competition closed on 1 July. We received a record number of entries, 2,120 from across 150 countries to be exact! Thank you for taking the time to apply and for sharing the great work you are doing to tackle some of the world’s environmental and social challenges. The entrepreneurial mindset of youth is continually inspirational. And the truth is that many of the boldest and brightest ideas come from young social entrepreneurs, just like you. You are the changemakers who are challenging 'business as usual' and who are the future of sustainability. 

We are pleased to announce Adepeju Mabadje as the HRH Prince of Wales Winner. Read her story and the other 7 inspirational winner stories here.

The power of collaboration

There’s more, we want to continue bringing together more entrepreneurs than ever to collaborate with big businesses – just like us – all under one roof. Imagine what we can achieve together. Intrigued? Join us!

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