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Sky One And Vodafone Join Forces To Announce ‘The Big Idea’


10 August 2006, Sky One and Vodafone today announced THE BIG IDEA - the UK’s largest-ever search to discover the next great British invention or business idea.

Voted on by the viewers, budding entrepreneurs will compete for a £100,000 investment in launching their idea or venture.

Supported by a major outreach programme undertaken by Vodafone, regional heats will be held in Manchester and London in September. Contestants can download an application form at

Produced by Ricochet Productions in association with Vodafone THE BIG IDEA will be broadcast on Sky One in the autumn, with extended programming on Sky Three. The show will be executively produced for Sky One by Steve Jones.

Richard Woolfe, Director of Programmes, Sky One, Two and Three said: “From John Logie Baird to Trevor Bayliss, Alexander Graham Bell to James Dyson, we are a nation of brilliant inventors and I’m delighted that Sky One and Vodafone are teaming up for The Big Idea. It’s the biggest ever UK search for inventions or business ideas and anyone with a flash of genius can participate.”

Nick Read, CEO of Vodafone added: “This is a unique partnership that sees two leading British brands join forces to showcase the best and brightest of Britain’s business talent. We have created a unique mainstream TV property that actively engages with today’s aspiring small business community. Fundamentally, it is our aim to inspire businesses to be successful and enable people to work wherever and whenever they require.”

Billy Paulett, Executive Producer for Ricochet said: “The Big Idea presents a huge opportunity for anyone who reckons they’ve got a cracking business idea that will take the nation by storm or an invention that is just waiting to be mass produced. Our two regional heats will give them the chance to showcase their ideas. We want to appeal to everyone; from the bloke beavering away in his shed, through the Mum who thinks she’s spotted a gap in the market, to the student who’s convinced he’s on his way to making his first million.”


About Sky One: Sky One is the most watched non-terrestrial channel in the UK, attracting more than 16.5m unique viewers every month and distinguishes itself from rival networks with award-winning, exclusive US and homegrown drama, talked-about entertainment formats and distinctive factual entertainment series.

About Vodafone UK: Vodafone UK has 16.2 million customers and is part of the world’s largest mobile community offering a wide range of voice and data communications. The company is committed to providing mobile solutions that allow both consumer and business customers to make the most of now. In addition, Vodafone connects customers across the globe with roaming agreements worldwide. It provides 3G roaming in 18 countries and offers great roaming value with Vodafone Passport. In June 2006 Vodafone UK was the first UK mobile network to launch a 3G broadband (HSDPA) service, available in London, Greater Manchester, Sheffield, Glasgow, Tyneside, the West Midlands, Bristol and Liverpool. For more information, please visit

About Ricochet: Ricochet is one of Britain’s leading independent television production companies producing high quality factual and entertainment programmes for broadcast by major networks in both the UK and US. Ricochet has a reputation for innovative and award winning programming, recent successes include the global hit Supernanny, now airing in 23 territories. Other programmes in the Ricochet catalogue include Risking it All, No Going Back, How Not to Decorate, Who Rules the Roost, Selling Houses, Born to be Different and Sex Tips for Girls. Ricochet has doubled its turnover in each of the last 3 years and now has over 100 people working for the company across offices in Brighton, London and Los Angeles.


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