Launch of Rising Star 2020

Each year, Marketing Derby, the city and county’s inward investment agency, gives the opportunity for an up-and-coming entrepreneur to receive a complimentary year of Bondholder membership along with local publicity and invitations to must-attend events.

In 2016, the accolade was awarded to University of Derby graduate Edward Hollands owner of start-up business and Dragon’s Den success story DrivenMedia. Ed says “Being the first Rising Star was a real game-changer for me. The chance to network with the business leaders of Derby and knowing I had their full support was a fantastic opportunity and really set me off on the right foot”.

This year, the competition was so high, that two local businesses were awarded the title of Rising Star; Sonia Sohal who owns The Fit, and Abbi Burns who runs Darley Dance Productions.

To apply for 2020, see below.

Abbi, owner of Darley Dance Productions said “Winning the Rising Star award has been truly transformational both for my business and for myself as a business owner. When you have your head down and work constantly on your business you sometimes get lost trying to work out how to make your business work. Winning the Rising Star award made me lift my head from my laptop and get out there.

"It’s been amazing to meet so many inspirational business people and to learn from them about what it really takes to move a company forward. That in turn has not only helped me build my confidence but also allowed me to gain clarity around my own business and see where I fit into an exciting city like Derby. It has been an incredible year! I feel like this year will forever be a turning point for my business and for that I will always be grateful to Marketing Derby.”

Sonia, owner of The Fit adds "When I got the phone call to say I had won the Rising Star award, I couldn't believe it! It was the most amazing feeling and the best way to start the year.

A lot of my clients are Bondholders, and I can see the positive impact this has on their businesses. I feel very lucky to now be a part of that!

Being the Rising Star alongside Abbi has also given me a confidence boost, enabling me to talk more about the world of fashion and looking your best."

To apply to be the Marketing Derby Rising Star for 2020, please email: by the 6th January 2020 and outline your business idea, a brief background of your story so far and why you would like to become the next Rising Star.

The applications will be shortlisted and successful applicants invited for a short interview and a winner announced at the Annual Business Event, to be held at Derby Theatre, on 17th January 2020.

Applicants must be in their first year of business and willing to attend at least ten Bondholder events during their year as Rising Star.


Bondholder entrepreneurs 2019

The Midlands finalists for the 2019 Natwest Great British Entrepreneur Awards have been announced, with a number of Marketing Derby Bondholders making the cut.

Founded in 2013, the NatWest Great British Entrepreneur Awards acknowledge the hard work and inspiring stories of entrepreneurs and businesses in the United Kingdom. The shortlist includes:


Peter Brodnicki of Bondholder Mortgage Advice Bureau for SERVICE INDUSTRIES ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR

Tim Rookes and Neil Shaw of Bondholder True MSP and Yvonne Gorman of Bondholder Essential Print Services for SMALL BUSINESS ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR

There are 93 finalists across the region in 12 categories including Disruptor, Scale-Up, Start-Up and Young, as well as new additions Food & Drink and Health & Beauty. Regional winners will be announced on 25 September 2019, with the national final in London on 21 November 2019.

To see the full list of finalists for The Midlands region, click here


Bondholder Secures Funding from Dragon

Ed Hollands, owner of Bondholder DrivenMedia, is overwhelmed after securing the support and funding of Dragon Jenny Campbell on the latest episode of the BBC series Dragons’ Den.

On the latest episode Ed pitched to the Dragons and one, Jenny Campbell, was inspired by his ambition and drive. She offered an investment of £30,000 for a 20 per cent share in his business – an offer he was happy to accept.

Ed said: “The whole experience was overwhelming and challenging. The Dragons leave nothing to chance and will grill you over your business idea, your vision and your financials. I’m so humbled by the fact that Jenny Campbell has seen my potential and I’m looking forward to learning from her.”

Jenny Campbell said of the deal: “I am very much looking forward to working with DrivenMedia and Ed, a young entrepreneur brimming with potential. Mentoring bright individuals at the start of their career is something I have been passionate about for a long time and I’m confident with Ed under my wing, both he and his business will achieve success. I am excited to watch DrivenMedia grow from strength to strength and am delighted to be part of the journey ahead.”

Ed came up with the idea soon after finishing a degree at the University of Derby where he achieved a first-class honours in business studies. His tutor is thrilled with his early success.

Bev Crighton, employer engagement lead at Bondholder the University of Derby, said: “Mentoring Ed has been a pleasure. We are so pleased for him, he was always a great student. It’s been an honour to support him and we will continue to do so.

“He always had ambitions to start a business and when he did we took advertising not only to show our support - it is simply a great business idea. We wish him every success and look forward to seeing him develop his business further with his Dragon.”

Prime-Time for Driven Media

Ed Hollands will appear on an episode of the current series of Dragons’ Den on February 11 2018. 

The 23 year old owner of Bondholder DrivenMedia has spent the last two years building his business which uses the advertising ‘space’ on the sides of trucks and lorries to market products and services.

Today Ed works with a range of hauliers, advertisers and marketing agencies including Three Counties Contracts and The Outdoor Advertising Directory. 

Ed decided he’d like to apply to appear on Dragons’ Den in the hope of impressing one or several of the Dragons. He applied and was selected to present a pitch to the Dragons. 

He said:  “There were a number of reasons why I applied to participate in the series. I wanted to raise awareness about the business however, more significantly I need to raise funding to take DrivenMedia to the next level. I appreciate I’m rather young to enter the Den but I’m not going to let my age put me off.”

Ed will be making his screen appearance before the Dragons on Sunday (February 11).  Watching him will be his business mentor Graham Mulholland, a well-known entrepreneur based in Derby. 

Graham has helped Ed re-think his original approach and has advised him on forming key strategic business partnerships.

Graham said: “While I consider it my duty to pass on my knowledge to the next generation of business leaders, I’ve relished mentoring someone as talented as Ed. He absolutely deserves his time in the Den. We practised his pitch until it was perfect. I’m confident he’ll face the Dragons and be ready to seduce them with his business proposal.”

Ed said: “Thanks to my mentor Graham, I wasn’t nervous on entering the Den. I know my business works and I have the business acumen necessary to ensure I can deliver.” 

Dragons’ Den has been running for 12 years on BBC Two. In this latest series,  the ‘Dragons’ multi-millionaire investors are: Deborah Meaden, Peter Jones, Jenny Campbell, Tej Lalvani and Touker Suleyman.

Bondholders on the Road

Bondholders Driven Media and Future Proof Films have teamed up to put an end to that age old question; how many people will see a truck advert during a normal day? And how long do people really spend looking at the rear?

Armed with several truck-mounted cameras and a shiny new truck advertising campaign, designed by Bondholder graphic design agency Black Apricot, Driven Media and Future Proof Films will be filming thousands of drivers and passengers to calculate the advert’s impressions and driver dwell time of the rear panel.

After filming on the M1 and M25 over a single day, the Bondholder duo will be counting each and every commuter they’ve captured to form a comprehensive and informative vlog on their findings.

The unique use of multiple mounted cameras, specifically designed to capture every passing driver and passenger, will provide invaluable data to Driven Media for their future marketing campaigns.

National Recognition for Bondholder

Founder of Bondholder DrivenMedia, Ed Hollands has been nominated in the Young Achiever of the Year Category, of the English SME Business Awards 2017. 

Ed, who has led DrivenMedia since August 2015, has gone from strength to strength; Ed was recently revealed as one to watch by fellow Bondholder Derby Telegraph. He was also the recipient of Marketing Derby's first rising star award.

When asked about his success, Ed said: "I'm absolutely delighted to be recognised as one of England's young achievers and am looking forward to the awards night.

"It's taken a lot of hard work over the last 20 months to reach this point, with a lot of support and encouragement from Derby's Business community and beyond. Most notably, Bev Crighton from the University of Derby, Claire Tonks from Flint Bishop and Graham Mulholland from epm:technology."

Finalists announced for Chamber Awards

The annual East Midlands Chamber Business Awards is back with a range of Bondholders competing as finalists.

We have a good cross-section of businesses represented this year and they all deserve their place on the list.
— Scott Knowles, Chief Executive of East Midlands Chamber

Bondholder finalists include Anoki, Balls2Marketing, Derby Museums (shortlisted for two categories), DrivenMedia, Foundation Derbyshire, Purpose Media, Sky Recruitment and HUUB, which is a finalist for four categories.

Scott Knowles, Chief Executive of East Midlands Chamber, said: "As always, we had a bumper crop of entries and our sponsors had a difficult task in whittling entrants in each category down to a final three. We have a good cross-section of businesses represented this year and they all deserve their place on the list."

Many Bondholders are also sponsoring categories including: East Midlands Trains, PKF Cooper Parry, RDS Global, Rolls-Royce and Mazars, which is sponsoring three categories across the region.

The East Midlands Chamber Business Awards 2016 for Derbyshire will be held on 16th September at the Roundhouse with the gala dinner being hosted by ITV Weather presenter, Emma Jesson.

Uni invests in Derby graduate

Ed Hollands, in front of one of his innovative lorry adverts

Bondholder University of Derby has invested in innovative truck advertising from fellow Bondholder DrivenMedia — owned by University of Derby graduate, Edward Hollands.

Last year Edward set up his business supplying advertising space on lorries after saving thousands of pounds while working at a supermarket. He came up with the idea to display adverts on the side of HGV trucks in a bid to help struggling logistics companies create additional revenue streams. This service allows companies to take advantage of the UK's densely populated roads and motorways to target commuters.

Edward said: "The University of Derby has been fantastic. Staff were involved and encouraging throughout my studies. Since my graduation, they have kept in touch and continued to provide practical support to me in my venture. To top it off, they saw the potential of my lorry advertising and became my client."

Jenny Baldwin, Recruitment and Marketing Manager for the College of Business at the University of Derby, commented: "It's fantastic to see Edward doing so well and it's great that we can now be his client and hopefully help him grow and develop further."

Edward manages more than 300 trailers across the UK, designing adverts and buying curtains for the side of vehicles to help advertise different products and companies.