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Connecting entrepreneurs and investors to change the world: Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2016

Published on June 30, 2016

The Hub’s Investment Director attended the just concluded 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES 2016), which connected entrepreneurs and investors from 170 countries. The goal: unleash their power to change the world.

“We’ve invested so much time and effort to make sure that America is helping to empower entrepreneurs.  We held our first summit back in 2010.  Since then, we’ve brought entrepreneurs like you together in Turkey, and the Emirates, and Malaysia, Morocco, Kenya.  And all told, we’ve helped more than 17,000 entrepreneurs and innovators connect with each other, access capital, find mentors, and start new ventures,” said President Barrack Obama in his remarks during the GES.

President Obama's full speech at 2016 GES.

Below are some of the capital commitments made to help empower entrepreneurs across the globe.

CalPERS California announced that they will open up an $11 billion global solicitation for new emerging manager investment strategies.  This will identify early funds that include international investments in global entrepreneurs with strong potential for success; accessing unique investment opportunities that may otherwise be overlooked; and cultivating the next generation of external portfolio management talent.

Endeavor, an organization that supports entrepreneurs around the world, launched a $100 million co-investment fund -- Endeavor Catalyst II -- to invest in high-growth companies across Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, and Southeast Asia.  Endeavor Catalyst II is a commitment by Endeavor and private sector leaders to support projects across the globe over the next four years. To date the fund has $30 million in pre-commitments.  

USAID’s Power Africa initiative launched the Scaling off Grid Energy Grand Challenge for Development that will invest $36m in promising enterprises, innovative technologies, and partnerships with local stakeholders to scale up clean energy solutions to reach millions of households that live beyond the reach of the electricity grid.  This effort will bring together entrepreneurs, investors, philanthropists, and governments to support the growth of innovative ventures that are making off-grid solutions affordable for rural families and catalyze private investment to help these enterprises reach new markets. 

President Obama will announce the launch of an effort to encourage greater investments in small-scale clean energy entrepreneurs from developing countries.  The Administration will identify and highlight entrepreneurs working to provide affordable, reliable, and significantly scalable on-grid or off-grid energy solutions that meet the renewable energy and energy efficiency needs of individuals, enterprises, and communities in the developing world, and in particular in sub-Saharan Africa. Entrepreneurs will be identified and highlighted from the large cadre of energy innovators, researchers and partner institutions in the developing world that have worked with U.S. Government entities, including USAID, the Departments of Defense and Energy, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the U.S. Trade and Development Agency.  

U.S. Department of State and Kiva, the world's largest crowdfunding platform for loans, have joined forces to launch the Women's Entrepreneurship Fund, which aims to help crowdfund loans to one million women entrepreneurs over the next five years. The Fund has a special focus on women entrepreneurs in the growth phases, offering loans greater than the average micro finance loan.  To date, an estimated $500,000 has been pledged with commitments from corporations and foundations.

USAID announced through it’s Feed the Future call for cool storage solutions.  Through a competitive call for innovations, USAID will provide up to $2.5 million in funding and mentoring to entrepreneurs to help them adapt, pilot and scale their proven cool storage solutions to prevent food loss and waste in countries where the U.S. Government’s Feed the Future initiative focuses efforts.  This call will expand the impact of USAID’s investment by catalyzing private investment that strengthens food chains between farms and markets.