STUDENTS are getting down to business in a challenge which sees them compete to sell real products to make a profit.

Six schools are taking part in the Enterprise Challenge to run the most successful businesses with the support of mentors from the real world of business.

The Daily Echo is following the progress of all the schools involved and, having visited The Bishop of Winchester, Parkstone Grammar, Ferndown Upper and QE Schools, is now taking a look at Bournemouth School and Bournemouth School for Girls. Both schools are represented by five different groups and the programme is well under way as students have been meeting regularly to develop their businesses.

The teams are working with real businesses – in Bournemouth’s case Abbey Life, Lloyds Bank, Castle Point and Hugh Symons.

Annie Yu, 16, has been selected as the managing director for her group Coralero which has already sold hundreds of novelty gifts made of recycled tennis balls.

She said: “Everyone on the group had different ideas for the decorations, so we took all the views on board and worked as a team.

“If you don’t do business studies, enterprise is a great chance to learn vital business skills such as how to sell to the community. It also looks great on your CV.”

The Coralero team has also raising money for Amelia’s Rainbow Fund and will be giving a percentage of their profits to the charity.

At just 14-years-old, deputy managing director Leila Will-ingham is the youngest of the group and joined the majority BSG group from St Edward’s in Poole.

She said: “It’s been a steep learning curve and we’ve all learnt how to work together as a team.”

Mentors Dominic Keeley and Rhiannon Kilner are also on hand to offer advice and support to team Coralero which is backed by Bournemouth University.

Once products have been created, the businesses sell them at West Quay shopping centre in Southampton, Castlepoint and the Dolphin Centre.

The competition will end with a host of awards given out at a ceremony in February.

Ben Knowles, from Enterprise and Skills said: “The students have all really started to come of their shell and they are really embracing the challenge. You can see a real change in them as they learn how to work effectively as part of a team.

“The groups will be judged on their overall performance after a presentation in front of 400 people at the final ceremony.”