Bëssen Wëssen, winners; Credit: Jonk Entrepreneuren Luxembourg © Pierre Levy

On Thursday 8 June 2023, a total of 16 mini-companies took part in the national final of the Mini-Enterprises programme organised by the Jonk Entrepreneuren Luxembourg Asbl at Kinepolis Kirchberg.

A total of 91 teams from 24 secondary schools had registered for the programme at the start of the school year.

The national Mini-Enterprises final started with a sale organised at the Kirchberg Shopping Centre; from 10:00, the 16 finalists offered their products for sale in the shopping centre and succeeded in enthusing passers-by with their creations. The jury also visited the sales stands and assessed the young entrepreneurs' ability to market their products.

At 15:30, an audience of more than 200 people assembled at Kinepolis Kirchberg to listen to the teams present their project and describe the experiences they had during the year. Moderated by Loïc Juchem, the event began with an encouraging speech by the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Jonk Entrepreneuren Luxembourg, Patrick Wies, who congratulated the young people for their perseverance and commitment. He stressed that participation in the programme is a very valuable experience that prepares young people for their professional future and thanked the schools and ministries for their continued support of the “Mini Enterprises” programme.

Claude Meisch, Luxembourg's Minister of National Education, Childhood and Youth, and Lex Delles, Minister of SMEs, were on hand to attend the presentations and congratulate the young people.

Minister Meisch pointed out that Luxembourg needs entrepreneurs and an entrepreneurial spirit to be able to innovate. What he likes so much about the Mini-Enterprises is that young people bring a new perspective to things and commit to renewing them.

Minister Delles was enthusiastic about the diversity of projects which clearly illustrate current trends and the team spirit shown by the young people. Because, in the end, it is not enough to have a good idea, it is the execution that determines the success of an idea.

The mini-enterprises were evaluated by a jury, made up of professionals from the world of work and representatives from the world of education.

The podium

The first prize was awarded by the Banque Internationale à Luxembourg (BIL) to Bëssen Wëssen from Lycée Aline Mayrisch.

The second prize was awarded by the Chamber of Commerce to Beachtime from Lycée Aline Mayrisch.

The third prize was awarded by the Chamber of Commerce to Vision Wood of the Lycée Michel Lucius.

The three teams also won the Reka Print Startup Package.

The team "Bëssen Wëssen" (A little knowledge) from Lycée Aline Mayrisch was elected the best mini-enterprise of the year: it produced a card game on the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, which won the first prize of the competition and which will represent Luxembourg at the "JA European Company of the Year Competition" in the framework of the GEN-E festival which will take place in Istanbul, Turkey, from 11 to 14 July 2023.

The innovative card game about the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg aims to facilitate integration into the country in a fun way. The aim is to make the Luxembourgish language and culture discoverable with the help of maps that highlight the monuments, traditions, events and people of Luxembourg.
The winning team consisted of nine students: Cherine Nothum, Julia Elgarrach, Emma Pardaens, Kim Lanners, Lynn Haupert, Mathieu Vercauteren, Véronique Olinger, Vicky Noben and Yanis Aboummaad. Sandra Thibeau, teacher, and Philippe Linster, CEO House of Startups and coach, accompanied the team throughout the year.

The second prize was awarded to the “Beachtime” team from Lycée Aline Mayrisch. The objective of this mini-enterprise was to develop, produce and market innovative beach towels with various additional functionalities (features). The mini-enterprise was made up of Xavier Reuter, Mathis Reuter, Fynn Arbogast, Alessandro Urzi, Shunit Khanal, Evan Smolen, Max Schlentz, Jeremy Majerus and Bryan Cross. Tom Emeringer, teacher, and Daniel Araujo, Project Advisor at the House of Entrepreneurship, accompanied the team during this adventure.

The third prize was awarded to the "Vision Wood" team from Lycée Michel Lucius. This mini-enterprise has designed a charging station that helps keep order and decorates the house nicely. The second product from the mini-enterprise are wooden Apple Pencil cases. The team was made up of Lucas Da Silva, Lara Matias, Alessandro Rosa, Ben Weins, Celine Chanson, Abel Parente, Sofia Cruz Soares and Loris Wack. Their teachers Fabienne Kieffer and Fabio Martins accompanied the team throughout the school year.

The Signature Awards

- The "Innovation and Value Creation Award" was presented by the Federation of Young Business Leaders of Luxembourg to Luxtopia of Lycée Robert Schuman.
- The “Financial Management Award” sponsored by Citi Foundation was given to Happy Pets from Lycée de Garçons de Luxembourg.
- The "Business Plan Award" was presented by ArcelorMittal to Beachtime of Lycée Aline Mayrisch.
- The "Marketing Strategy and Campaign Award" was presented by Cactus to MELLY'S from the School of Commerce and Management.
- The “Work Readiness Award” was given by Kinepolis Luxembourg to Vision Wood from Lycée Michel Lucius.
- The "Social Entrepreneurship Award" was presented by the Ministry of Labour, Employment and the Social and Solidarity Economy to AquaCycle of the Lycée Classique de Diekirch.
- The “Public Choice Award” was presented by Post to the Luxtopia team