Now in its 11th big year in Totnes, the Local Entrepreneur Forum is a powerful catalyst for a vibrant, bustling, and abundant new economy in the Totnes area. Just what we need now! Every year, we bring the community together – entrepreneurs, investors, and other change makers together to learn from each other, form new relationships, and begin enterprising collaborations. Social, sustainable, regenerative, resilient, innovative – new enterprises creating meaningful livelihoods and contributing to the community in positive ways. This is the beating heart of what we call ‘community supported entrepreneurism’.
Everyone has a stake in their local economy and everyone can be an investor, too. Entrepreneurs need all kinds of support. Financial capital is important, but so are other forms of support, from expert mentoring to child care. Entrepreneurs supported by the community do better. The economy does better, too. It’s part of what make this place a nice place to live and raise a family.
If you’d like to get involved in helping to organise this year’s activities, please get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org
2023 Local Entrepreneur Forum –
At Royal Seven Stars Hotel Ballroom, Totnes
Thursday 6pm – 9:30pm
June 8th, 2023
It’s the 11th one! We’ve been running this amazing community gathering aimed at bringing into being a resilient, ecological, just, convivial local economy since 2012. To date, 44 projects have pitched! Over 250 people have played the role of ‘community dragon’ and have made over 1000 ‘investments’. Join us on June 8th and participate in this annual gathering full of solidarity, reciprocity, and positive change. We’ll have lots of opportunity for new entrepreneurs – and old – to connect, build relationships with peers, supporters, investors. And then 4 entrepreneurs will pitch to the Community of Dragons!
Want to pitch? Get in touch. Deadline May 1.
Email us at email@example.com
Pitching to the Community of Dragons – Criteria
Each year, we have slots for 4 or 5 entrepreneurs to pitch their projects to the Community of Dragons. This is a great opportunity to raise the profile of your venture, as well as to gain financial and or/non-financial investment and support. Our criteria for choosing which ventures pitch:
- enterprise is ethical, sustainable and appropriately local
- demonstrates competence through business plan and/or track record
- business model does not rely on donations or grant funding
- ‘investment’ required would allow venture to ‘get to the next level’ – investment could be financial and/or non-financial.
- ideally would operate in one or more of the sectors identified in the Local Economic Blueprint – food, renewable energy, housing, health & care
- contributes to the long-term resilience of the community
- one slot is reserved for a youth-led enterprise.
Whether projects get to pitch or don’t, the LEF is designed so that everyone benefits.
LEF in depth
Want a more in-depth view on the Local Entrepreneur Forum, where it came from, and how it fits into the broader strategy behind the Totnes REconomy Project? Read our new Totnes REconomy Project Impact Report. And check out these blog posts: “The LEF – REconomy’s Killer App?”; “Citizen-led Economic Transition”; “A Taste of the Future in the Community of Dragons”.
And check out this short film about the LEF in 2014, from Emilio Mula and Nu-Frame – https://youtu.be/EnDiDxYFRX
You can also download the full 32-page 2017 Impact Report detailing some of the outcomes from the LEF, REconomy Centre and Local Economic Blueprint projects:
Rob Hopkins calls it one of the ten innovations coming out the Transition Movement that could begin to turn the crisis around. Ways With Words, July 13, 2013
What attendees have been saying:
“people lead such atomised lives. It’s a wonderful way of bringing people together.”
“Its not just about money. you get a double return from investing in our community”
“small acorns…you never know where things are going to lead”
“we are all investors”
What past pitchers have said about the experience (video):
- Holly Tiffen, Grown in Totnes
- Zav Bowden, Dart Valley Timber
- Doug King-Smith, HillyField CIC
- Fraser Durham, Argand Solutions
- Adam Sayner and Eric Jong, GroCycle
- Rob Hopkins, New Lion Brewery
- Mark Burton, Plough & Share Credit Union
- Chris Bird, Transition Homes
- Laura Creen, School Farm CSA
Please help us cover the costs!
This year’s event is coming together through the generously invested time and knowhow of a small group of people. Yay! We’ll have some expenses amounting to about £500. Please help us cover the costs and continue to organise these amazing gatherings.