In 1996 Matt Newing had a business idea to try and rent out memorable free phone numbers to big companies and make money from the phone calls they received, but didn’t have the means to turn it into a reality. He contacted The Prince’s Trust which, believing in his entrepreneurial spirit and business concept, offered him a £1,000 grant to get started after he took part in the Enterprise programme.

Fast forward 23 years and Matt has built numerous national and international businesses, which turn over circa £75 million per annum.  However, he has never forgotten his humble beginnings and came back to The Trust in 2013 wanting to help other young people to transform their lives, just like he did.

Since then Matt, whose business is called Elite Group, has donated close to £60,000 towards The Trust’s work across the North West of England – helping young people to gain the skills and confidence to live, learn and earn through the charity’s programmes.

His ethos of giving back and supporting local communities is an integral part of his business’ culture. As well as supporting The Prince’s Trust, Matt was one of the founding members of the Manx Educational Foundation, and is also involved in Action Aid, currently supporting a project to build seven schools in Ethiopia, which will educate more than 2,000 children a year, and provide access to clean water and toilet facilities.

Matt has invested across a range of sectors – including tech, property, data and the secondary ticket market – including minority and majority stakes in various public and private sector businesses.

His advice to young entrepreneurs looking to start their first business would be:

“Turn one of your hobbies or something you are really passionate about into a business, do it and you will make money”.