Enter BT competition to win, err, a nice photo

Smarta has heard of a few interesting prizes, but as bizarre business competitions go, BT’s Essence of the Entrepreneur competition is up there among the weirdest.
Winners of the competition, which is in its third year, receive the prestigious but nonetheless slightly irrelevant reward of being photographed by British uber-photographer Rankin - exactly what cash-strapped businesses need as they struggle their way through the recession.

Photographs of the winners will be displayed in gallery@oxo during January next year, showing people the competition’s organisers say have demonstrated ‘exceptional dedication and passion towards their work’.

Weird it may be, but the competition seems to have a knack of picking future success stories: past winners have included Glasses Direct’s Jamie Murray Wells, Miniclip’s Rob Small, and gardener Alice Bowe, who ended up appearing in BT’s ad campaign.

It’s not all posing for the camera, though: while 20 entrepreneurs will be photographed, one lucky winner receives a £10,000 business grant from BT.

Competition judge and Dragons' Den poster boy Peter Jones is adamant the competition is a worthwhile cause. “Being involved in this competition is an opportunity for any entrepreneur,” he said. “By just applying makes you stop and think about the way you run your business and what you have achieved, which is important.”

Err, quite.

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