Amelia Christie Miller Stelios

Amelia Christie-Miller will use the winnings to continue Bold Bean’s growth

Bold Bean Co founder Amelia Christie-Miller has scooped the top prize in a new competition from the founder of EasyJet to name the brightest young entrepreneurs in the UK.

Christie-Miller, who launched the bean brand in 2021, won £150k to support Bold Bean’s growth at a ceremony in London today (16 April) hosted by the Stelios Philanthropic Foundation.

She will use the money to help grow the brand, with an eye to international expansion and new product ranges.

The new awards were launched in January to promote young entrepreneurship, with 52 UK-based businesses applying and a shortlist facing a grilling from Stelios Haji-Ioannou.

The EasyJet founder picked winners that his charitable foundation felt were best placed to create jobs in the UK and be role models for young people dreaming of starting their own businesses.

Tom Ushakov won £100k as runner-up at the inaugural young entrepreneur awards for his London Pregnancy Clinic business, while Charlotte Stavrou took home £50k for her SevenSix Agency.

Christie-Miller called the grant “game changing”.

“In an economic context where businesses are taught to think of survival as opposed to long-term investments in brand and value, this is an absolute gift,” she added.

“It allows us blue-sky thinking and creativity that we just couldn’t indulge in before. We are beyond grateful for this opportunity to help us make even more people bean obsessed.”

Haji-Ioannou said: “Over the past 30 years I have a long track record of helping to create tens of thousands of UK jobs both on the for-profit side by creating the Easy family of brands but also with my charitable foundation and the existing awards for disabled entrepreneurs.

“I am really impressed with the three winners of these new awards, which proves once again that in the UK of 2024 entrepreneurship is very much alive and kicking.

“Each of the winners are very good at promoting themselves and their businesses in the marketplace, and I think they would make great ambassadors for our awards and great role models for others to start their own business. That is how new jobs are created in the real economy.”

Christie-Miller recently secured a £50k investment from Deborah Meaden during an appearance on the BBC’s Dragons’ Den.

Bold Bean Co – which was also named the Grocer Gold Startup of the Year in 2023 – is stocked by supermarkets and independent retailers across the UK, including Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, M&S, Booths and Ocado.