Barclays’ cool £50,000 helps web firm growth

Oliver Sidwell, centre, with Ali Lindsay, left and Chris Wickson

Oliver Sidwell, centre, with Ali Lindsay, left and Chris Wickson

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A FORMER Tring schoolboy has been given a £50,000 business boost by Barclays bank following a public vote.

Oliver Sidwell, who used to live in Christchurch Road, launched the website RateMyPlacement.co.uk in 2007 with fellow university students, Chris Wickson and Ali Lindsay.

After graduating from Loughborough University, he continued his web development work for 18 months from his bedroom in the town.

Their company RMP Enterprise Ltd, is now based in London with an office of 13 people. It consists of four parts – the website RateMyPlacement.co.uk, the National Placement & Internship Awards, a publication entitled A Students Guide to the Top Placement & Internship Employers and the latest arm of the business, On-Campus Promotions.

Oliver, who also attended Goldfield Infants School and Bishop Wood School, and his company was one of nine regional winners of £50,000 in the Barclays Take One Small Step Competition. They also receive free support and advice to make their business dreams a reality.

Delighted Oliver said: “The money will help us invest heavily in marketing and concentrate on further raising our awareness in the student market, potentially expanding the team in the process. We are delighted to win £50k, it’s a fantastic achievement and we would like to thank all those who voted for us!”

Barclays area business manager Ben Sheeran said: “Congratulations to RMP, It’s a life-changing moment for this deserving business and we intend to support them every step of the way in order to help build the next generation of SMEs in the UK.”

The remaining 18 shortlisted companies received £3,000 to encourage them to keep going with their business ideas.