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Evening Standard teams up with AXA for Startup Angel competition 2022

If you have a bold business dream, then this brilliant competition is your opportunity to make it a reality

16 May 2022

he AXA Startup Angel competition, from AXA in partnership with the Evening Standard, will see a panel of judges – business high-flyers, including Evening Standard CEO Charles Yardley – pick the most inspiring ideas from a selection of elevator pitch videos.

There are six chances to win. Two competition winners will each receive the Gold prize of £25,000, mentorship and business insurance for the first year from AXA. There are Silver and Bronze prizes too – both of which include a digital advertising campaign with the Evening Standard.

“I’m delighted that the Evening Standard has teamed up with AXA Business Insurance for this year’s Startup Angel competition,” says Charles Yardley. “It’s a fantastic opportunity for small businesses to win valuable financial support and priceless mentoring. From a personal perspective, I’m really looking forward to joining the judges and hearing what these new businesses have to offer.”

The average UK start-up spends around £23,000 in its first year – and the Gold Startup Angel competition prize not only helps to break through that financial barrier, but also provides the winners with plenty of expert support.

“Small Businesses are at the heart of Britain’s economy and contribute significantly to our society,” says AXA Small Business Champion and Startup Angel judge Gerry Donnachie. “Unfortunately, not all survive their first year and with high setup costs, getting off the ground can be difficult. This is why we’re running AXA Startup Angel for the second consecutive year.”

Visit to begin your journey.

Introducing the 2022 AXA Startup Angels

Three successful entrepreneurs – Ian Theasby and Henry Firth, co-founders of BOSH!, and Raphael Sofoluke CEO and founder of UK Black Business Week and UK Black Business Show – return to their AXA Startup Angels mentorship roles from last year’s inaugural competition. They are joined this year by Sharmadean Reid MBE, founder and CEO of The Stack World.

How to enter the AXA Startup Angel competition

Go to and register your details. Next, submit answers to two questions (maximum 200 words per answer) and upload a one-minute elevator pitch video (in either mp4 or .mov digital format).

Together, this forms your competition submission. Your submission – which also accounts for how you intend to spend the prize money – will be judged by an expert panel. You need to tell a clear and compelling story to inspire them, and display drive, passion and excitement for your business idea, and more. You’ll also demonstrate clear understanding of your target market.

Two winning entrants will each receive the Gold prize, which consists of £25,000 to fund the business idea; business mentoring by the AXA Startup Angels; and 12 months of business insurance.

Three winning entrants will receive the Silver prize and one will receive the Bronze prize. Both Silver and Bronze prizes include a digital advertising campaign with the Evening Standard.

Don’t delay – deadline for entries is 17 July 2022. Terms apply. 18+ UK Residents only. Entry period closes at 23.59 on 17 July 2022. One entry per business.

Read full terms here and to enter go to