Entrepreneurs: how can entrepreneurship in hospitality be better supported?

During and post pandemic, we were often asked as to when we planned to relaunch our events showcasing entrepreneurs, which we have been delighted to do this year. To raise the bar, we have also created a panel of industry experts and elders to come together and offer their feedback and insights on the pitch decks offered by entrepreneurs seeking to develop their businesses.

Hospitality does have a habit of attracting a broad spectrum of new ideas, concepts and products but where will you be able to access objective feedback from experts who know what it takes to be successful?

An entrepreneurs’ journey has become ever harder; harder to access business without crossing many barriers, more costly to launch and a more competitive, unforgiving market. It is increasingly difficult today to launch new ideas.

Sharing ideas with experts provides an excellent sounding board and indicator for what is needed. We have long spoken of the need for a marriage between senior players and young talent. Each looks at the world through very different eyes, but both together can create strength in alliance.

EP has been delighted therefore to bring together a group of exceptional talents who can offer insight and expertise which is rare to find. EP possesses a community of senior players who are interested and care about good business. Via this community, entrepreneurs can find a route to business, to investors, to mentors and advisors, even to partners and alliances. This is the real value of a community and the framework which is being developed as it is about creating a positive support mechanism for great talent and ideas.

As many entrepreneurs will openly note, it can be a vulnerable journey which does expose all weaknesses. It takes courage to start to pitch an idea. It can be remarkably painful to realise just how short one falls time and again, but it is that learning and adapting which creates the basis of success.

If EP can create a community which is encouraging and supportive, then all for the better as the importance of entrepreneurship cannot be underestimated. Of course, it will drive economic growth and create new jobs. It highlights innovation by bringing new ideas, products, and services to the market. Maybe even more than ever, it today also contributes to social and working change by developing products or services that reduce people’s dependence on past practices. At the end it was technology which did allow business to face the lockdowns with some hope. It is technology which has empowered the employee to work from home and it is technology which is now creating new solutions to help develop hospitality services.

It can also be of real value to corporates who do need the latest innovation. It is so often remarked by entrepreneurs that corporates almost make it too hard to do business. How can this be eased? Can a better process be developed?

We feel fortunate to see many new ideas coming to market and are delighted to be working with a range of very special talents across many disciplines. The ideas and concepts in play range from new hotel concepts to new thinking on service to new food and beverage products to of course new digital and tech offers to robotics.

Much is changing, and entrepreneurship sits right on the front line of that change taking place.

Written by Chris Sheppardson, founder of EP Business in Hospitality