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Hyundai recognises UK's young entrepreneurs


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Two UK teams make it through to top five in European final Cross team from Slovakia wins second ‘Skills for the Future’ award Magneat team from UK receives second place with dashboard tidy product 2014 competition contested by 15 finalists from seven countries Skills for the Future aims to close the gap between education and business


HIGH WYCOMB, England - June 2, 2014: The winners of the 2014 Hyundai Motor Europe ‘Skills for the Future’ competition have been announced during an event at the company’s European headquarters in Offenbach, Germany. The two winners of Hyundai UK’s Best Business Enterprise award – Magneat and Fun Learning 4 U – featured in the top five with Magneat coming second overall in the European finals.

The winning team, Cross from Slovakia, developed, marketed and sold a new mobile application called ‘Careful Eye’. Using wireless technology without the need for an Internet connection, the ‘Careful Eye’ app allows adult drivers to safely and directly communicate with children travelling in the rear of their vehicle.

The UK teams Magneat, from Holmer Green Senior School, and Fun Learning 4 U, from The Highcrest Academy, are both based in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire and travelled to Germany with their unique business propositions. Magneat’s dashboard tidy earned them second place, while Fun Learning 4 U placed closely behind inside the top five with a game designed to teach road safety to young children.

Charlotte Arpino James, Managing Director of Magneat, said: “Skills for the Future has been a really valuable experience for us - travelling to Germany and meeting the other finalists from all across Europe gave us such a buzz. We have learnt so much about team-work and how to communicate effectively, which are skills that will help us stand out from the crowd throughout our careers.”

Tony Whitehorn, CEO of Hyundai Motor UK, commented: “Hyundai’s pan-European Skills for the Future initiative helps to prepare young people for today’s competitive job market. Bringing our UK finalists to Germany was a fantastic experience for the pupils involved and everyone had a great time, with teams from all over Europe interacting and gaining inspiration from each other. We’re very proud of how well both UK teams faired considering the stiff competition from the other teams present.”

Assessing the 15 aspiring companies, the competition judges considered four main criteria: Performance (the ability to be profitable and secure long-term growth), Product (the creation of realistic products or services for the automotive industry), Innovation (demonstrating inventiveness and sustainability) and Teamwork (how the team works together and presents their company).

Allan Rushforth, Senior Vice President and COO of Hyundai Motor Europe, who headed the judging panel, commented: “We are committed to helping drive economic growth in Europe, and by investing in the business leaders of tomorrow we are contributing to a more prosperous future. Our education and mentoring initiatives will help tackle the skills gap in Europe’s job market, inspiring the next generation of entrepreneurs and providing them with a valuable platform for business success.”

Latest statistics reveal youth unemployment in Europe is at a record high, with 5.5 million young people (23% of the demographic) out of work.

The Skills for the Future programme, a joint-initiative between Hyundai and Junior Achievement-Young Enterprise (JA-YE) Europe, empowers young people with a greater understanding and awareness of the skills required to succeed. During the three-year initiative, the programme aims to reach 10,000 students in 15 countries, working with 400 Hyundai volunteers.

In addition to Allan Rushforth, the six-strong judging panel comprised of Simone Baldassarri (Director General, European Commission Enterprise and Industry), Diana Filip (Deputy CEO, JA-YE Europe), Chas Hallett (Brand Editor of Autocar magazine), Ernst Kopp (Workshop Manager, Hyundai Motorsport) and David Labrosse (Head of Product Planning, Hyundai Motor Europe Technical Centre).