Computer Science graduate Ashton Clapp always knew he wanted to start his own business. All he needed was a little support. “It can be difficult to find a route to entrepreneurship right out of university,” he explains, “since it requires a certain amount of guidance, mentorship, and financial security.”
Fortunately, Ashton’s potential as an innovator didn’t go unnoticed. As a student he worked tirelessly to develop and achieve recognition for his ideas: winning the University’s Apps Crunch contest with a novel concept for an app which helps people plan days out with their friends and family. His prize was a trip to Silicon Valley – the tech start-up centre of the universe – where some of our most successful alumni and friends generously gave him their time and expertise.
Success at the Bath Business Plan competition soon followed, then, in his final year, Ashton’s blend of technical gifts and entrepreneurial drive earned him a coveted Innovation Award from a fellow graduate, His Excellency Khalil Foulathi. It was a gift that would change his life.
In just two years, Ashton and his business partner, graduate Max Maybury, have founded three businesses across different technology sectors, employ a team of nine, including other Bath graduates, and have grown all their products without seeking any external investment. Their thriving tech consultancy business, Backslash Build (\build), is their foundation, allowing them to cultivate new ideas which they’ve quickly turned into successful spin-off companies.
Ashton says: > To my donor, I would like to say thank you for the seed that you planted. Gifts like yours enable entrepreneurial alumni like Max and me to follow our dreams.
We’re proud that Ashton is building his future here in Bath. It’s looking extraordinarily bright.