29 June 2017


Virgin Media Business brings the Voom Tour Bus to Grainger Street, Newcastle, on Thursday, 6th July

  • Anyone with a great business idea invited to pitch to an expert panel for the chance to win £5000 and brunch with Sir Richard Branson
  • Free and exclusive mentoring, seminars and business advice from Virgin Media Business and partners including ICAEW, JCDecaux, LinkedIn and Crowdfunder will be on offer

Virgin Media Business today announces that it will bring the Voom Tour Bus to Grainger Street, near Grey’s monument, Newcastle on Thursday, 6th July.

Whether starting a new business, or wanting to jolt a current venture into a burst of new growth, the Voom Tour is bringing a wealth of free advice and activity to budding entrepreneurs, including:

  • Free one-to-one business advice from experts including ICAEW, JCDecaux, LinkedIn and Crowdfunder
  • For any Newcastle entrepreneurs who are brave enough to pitch their business idea, there is a chance to win £5000 and attend a brunch hosted by Richard Branson (pre-registration required to pitch)

As part of the Voom Tour, Voom Pitch - the UK and Ireland’s biggest business pitching competition - has hit the road in search of the best new business ideas. The Voom Bus will be in Grainger Street, near Grey’s monument, Newcastle from 10am on Thursday 6th July, with the live pitching competition taking place at 3pm that day.

The Voom Bus arrives in Newcastle as new research from Virgin Media Business shows that over a third of Geordies (34%) think they’d had a great idea for a new business, with three quarters of these (75%) failing to turn their business idea into reality. The top reasons for not taking any action include not knowing how to get the funding they needed (38%), being scared to take such a big risk (36%), and being scared to leave their job (34%).

However, of those that had a great idea, a quarter (25%) set up a business and 18% took steps to set up a company. Of this group, 68% even came up with the name for the company and cited their friends (30%) as being their main source of encouragement for turning their business idea into a reality.

Interestingly, a quarter of Newcastle residents (25%) cited Richard Branson as the most inspiring business personality, admitting he is the one who would most motivate them to start their own business.

The Voom Tour gives Newcastle’s budding entrepreneurs the chance to get the advice they need to take their ideas to the next level.

Sir Richard Branson, Virgin Group Founder, said: “The Voom Tour is coming to seek out the brilliant entrepreneurs and ideas from Newcastle, and help break down the barriers to business success. The aim is to help them put aside their fears and take the next steps on what could be the most significant journey of their business life.”

Rob Orr, Executive Director, Virgin Media Business, said: “Whether you’ve already started a business and want some help, or need advice to help get a brand new venture off the ground, the Voom Tour is the perfect platform to prepare your business for the big time. We hope to see as many of Newcastle’s business community as possible join us in Newcastle town centre on 6th July.”

For more information on the Voom Tour, and details on how to register to pitch a great business idea, please visit


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For all Virgin Media press enquiries please contact:
Nathan Hatch | | 0333 000 2900 | @VirginMediaCorp


The Voom Bus will be open from 10am-5pm on Thursday 6th July 2017. It will be located at Grainger Street (adjacent to Grey's Monument), Newcastle, NE1 5AE.

About the research
Research was conducted online by Opinium between 2nd and 12th June 2017, among 3,751 UK adults from Newcastle, Manchester, Birmingham, Cardiff, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Hampshire and Dundee. Of these, 500 people were surveyed from the city of Newcastle.

Voom Tour 2017
The Voom Tour 2017 will visit regional centres across the UK and will include ten Voom Pitch competition stops, introduction to Voom Fibre and business networking opportunities. Virgin Media Business would like to thank its Voom Tour partners JCDecaux, ICAEW, Crowdfunder and Virgin StartUp. 

Voom Tour 2017 Partners
The UK's #1 crowdfunding platform, Crowdfunder is all about putting the #VOOM into fundraising and awareness for great ideas. And they give Voom Pitch entrants the chance to raise money while they canvas votes. The team are hitting the road to share their know-how, spreading the word about creating brilliant crowdfunding campaigns, gaining validation to take ideas from a light-bulb moment and making it happen through the power of the crowd.

The UK's number one out-of-home advertising company is also part of the world's leading outdoor advertising company.

ICAEW is committed to helping companies like #VOOM by providing entrepreneurs with free professional support and guidance through our Business Advice Service. Our ICAEW Chartered Accountants advise over 1.5 million businesses across the UK and will be available at stops on the tour to support entrepreneurial businesses aiming to grow and develop. As leading financial experts, a qualified chartered accountant can help you with all your business issues, from managing your cash flow to accessing the right funding solution for your business, to ensure that your business succeeds.

Virgin StartUp
Virgin StartUp is a not-for-profit arm of the Virgin Group spearheading the group’s entrepreneurial philosophy; providing government-backed start-up Loans, one-to-one mentoring and business advice to thousands of businesses across England and Scotland.

Virgin StartUp is joining the Voom Tour 2017 to provide valuable expertise, help and advice on how to launch and scale a start-up. They will be providing expert judges for the pitching competitions as well as first class business advisors to support the one to one sessions with budding entrepreneurs.

Voom Pitch (previously VOOM 2016)
Voom Pitch is the new name for the national pitching competition and the new regional competitions.  Both the national and regional competition gives entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized businesses the opportunity to pitch their ideas to expert judges and win prize money and business promotion opportunities.  The national competition will be judged by Richard Branson and there will be opportunity to win a slice of a prize fund worth over £1million and will take place in March 2018.  Voom Pitch, the regional competition, will be part of The Voom Tour and there will be chance to win a slice of a prize fund worth £50,000 and takes place in communities across the UK between May and Nov 2017.

Voom Fibre product information
For more information about Voom Fibre, businesses can visit

About Virgin Media Business
We provide internet, data and telephone services to UK businesses and the public sector. We have more than 50,000 customers, most of which are small and medium enterprises. We also partner with the public sector: with local councils and thousands of schools to improve connectivity in communities and support learning, and with the emergency services to enable them to efficiently perform their life-saving skills.

We’re part of the Virgin Media group, the UK’s first provider of all four broadband, TV, mobile phone and home phone services. Virgin Media is a part of Liberty Global, the world’s largest international cable company. Together Virgin Media and Liberty Global serve more than 59 million subscribers in more than 30 countries - connecting people to the digital world and enabling them to discover and experience its endless possibilities.

The company’s dedicated, ultrafast network delivers the fastest widely available broadband speeds to homes and businesses. We’re expanding this through our £3 billion Project Lightning programme, which will result in a total of 17 million premises connected to our network.

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Virgin Media is part of Liberty Global, the world’s largest international cable company. Together we serve 27 million customers across 14 countries.

We support entrepreneurs, businesses and the public sector, delivering the fastest widely available broadband speeds and a complete digital platform packed with next-generation products, applications and services.

With our £3bn Project Lightning programme we aim to reach 17 million premises by 2019, including the UK’s most under-served areas.