High-Impact Entrepreneurship

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Turkey’s Iyzico Raises Series B Round of Funding with Participation from Endeavor Catalyst

The Istanbul-based Iyzico, founded by Endeavor Entrepreneurs Barbaros Özbugutu and Tahsin Isın, raised a  $6.2 million Series B round of funding led by IFC, 212 and Speedinvest, with participation from Endeavor Catalyst.  The payments company provides a platform to […]

May 28th, 2015 — by admin

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Fifth Annual Endeavor Colombia Conference Brings Together Top Latin American Network Members in Bogotá

logo-endeavorThe 5th annual Endeavor Colombia Conference took place in Bogotá this month with the theme “A Day to Think Big”, aiming to inspire entrepreneurs and audiences with the high-impact stories of Endeavor’s network and provide a top forum for networking. The Conference brought together over 250 Endeavor stakeholders, including entrepreneurs, board members, and mentors from across Latin America.


The opening panel featuring key members of the Endeavor network

The event marked the first time Endeavor Colombia partnered with Foros El Espectador, a top organizer of business conferences and events in the region. Of the attendees, 17 panelists from Mexico, Chile, the US and Colombia were present, as well as Endeavor Colombia mentors Juanita Ochoa and Fernando Anzures, Endeavor Miami Board Member Adriana Cisneros and Endeavor Investor Network member Chris Rogers.

Eight Endeavor Entrepreneurs from Mexico, Colombia and Chile were present, including  Carlos Anaya of Parkimovil, Diego Solorzano of Carrot.mx, Arturo Galvan of Naranya,  Alex Torrenegra and Tania Zapata of Bunny Inc., Kenneth Mendiwelson of Refinancia, Mario Hernandez of Marroquinera and Jorge Nazer of ALTO.

The content of the day-long conference opened with a panel about international expansion strategies featuring Endeavor Entrepreneurs and network members, followed by multiple panels focused on marketing trends, the impact of entrepreneurship in urban areas, and entrepreneurial success stories. Subsequent workshop events were themed around challenges in investments and marketing.

Read press coverage of the conference in El Espectador by clicking here.


Attendees fill the room during a conference panel

Saudi Arabia’s Lomar Launches New Retail Concept and Line of Women-Focused Apparel


Saudi Arabian entrepreneur company Lomar, founded by Loai Naseem, recently launched a new store concept along with a new line of apparel targeted towards women. The thobe-focused fashion house has been an innovator in its sector since it began in 2005, taking a once standard and uniform garment and bringing it into the modern world with luxury design.

In October, Lomar hosted an “And Her” event to launch its new retail experience in a new flagship store in the city of Jeddah. Hosted by Saudi media personality Muna Abusulayman, the launch brings a full retail experience to the Lomar family by offering an innovative one-stop shopping experience for both men and women. Continuing the legacy Lomar has forged by redefining the thobe, the company has now turned its sights to the needs of Saudi women, embarking on a two-year product development and research effort to identify the material and design needs of female consumers. This culminated in the launch of a new women’s line that rethinks the abaya and can serve the needs of a variety of occasions and settings. The event was attended by fashion enthusiasts and bloggers as well as a number of social media celebrities from the region.

Since his selection into the network in 2012, Loai has been set up with a local advisory board of experts in the retail industry who will help his team refine their business model and expansion strategy. The company currently employs over 500 people.

Read more about the event by clicking here.


Attendees at the Lomar launch event

Argentina’s Technisys Raises $13 Million in Funding Round, Receives Participation From Endeavor Catalyst


Technisys, an Endeavor Argentina entrepreneur company, raised $13 million in a Series B round of funding that included participation from Intel Capital, Alta Ventures, KaSZeK Ventures, Endeavor Catalyst and existing investor Holdinvest. Technisys has brought an innovative business model to the banking world in Latin America by offering omnichannel technology solutions to customers through mobile devices, ATM machines, online platforms and more.

The company was founded in 1996 by Endeavor Entrepreneurs Miguel Santos and German Pugliese Bassi, and has grown to employ 300 people across 10 Latin American offices. The company’s growth has expanded as the region’s middle class continues to rise, with clients like Citibank, Banco Itaú, Banco Estado de Chile and Banco Original leveraging their solutions to reach customers for savings, payments and loans services. Technisys streamlines the information held within various applications and provides banks with a simpler and more effective means for customer interaction. The company is expected to reach close to $30 million in revenue this year.

“The banks should be reaching the customer in a holistic way. That means allowing them to connect via the Web, tablet, ATMs, smartphones and new wearable devices,” said CEO Miguel Santos.

With much of the population in Latin America still lacking access to traditional banking services, the team at Technisys has uncovered a key opportunity to leverage technology and reach consumers looking for efficient financial solutions. The Technisys team expects to use the Series B funding to expand to new markets and continue investing in R&D, particularly in the wearable devices market.

“We’re thrilled to contribute to this next phase of Technisys’ growth,” said Endeavor co-founder and CEO Linda Rottenberg about Endeavor Catalyst’s participation. “We’re very proud of what Miguel, German and their team has achieved so far and have big expectations for the future.”

Since joining the Endeavor in 2001, the entrepreneurs have been active members of the network, receiving custom advisory services from a local board of Endeavor mentors. In addition, Endeavor has connected the team with other entrepreneurs and business leaders through retreat and summit events, as well as through talent programs like the EY Vantage Program. Endeavor Catalyst’s participation in this round demonstrates the company’s high-impact, high-growth potential.

Read more about the investment news in the Wall Street Journal.

About Endeavor Catalyst

Endeavor Catalyst is a passive co-investment vehicle that allows Endeavor Global to invest in Endeavor Entrepreneurs in a neutral, unbiased way. The main goal of this program is to use the returns of the investment to support Endeavor’s operations. The fund also contributes to Endeavor’s mission as it promotes professional third-party angel and venture capital investors to take a stronger interest in emerging market investment opportunities. Learn more about Endeavor Catalyst by clicking here.

Linda Rottenberg Appears in Top Media Outlets to Discuss “Crazy Is A Compliment” and Share Stories of Endeavor Entrepreneurs

CrazyMediaEndeavor CEO and co-founder Linda Rottenberg’s first book “Crazy Is A Compliment: The Power of Zigging When Everyone Else Zags” was released in October, bottling 17 years of insights and anecdotes from her work with nearly a thousand of the world’s best high-impact entrepreneurs. As part of the its release, Linda has appeared in a number of top media outlets – including Fortune Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, CNBC, MSNBC and Fast Company – to share lessons from the over 40 Endeavor Entrepreneurs highlighted in the book.

In “Crazy Is A Compliment”, Linda expresses the idea that entrepreneurship is not just for entrepreneurs anymore. Whether it’s an employee at a Fortune 500 company, a nonprofit, or a mom-and-pop shop, everyone needs to think and act like a changemaker in order to create their own success stories. She draws on her unique experience to show readers how they can take manageable steps to achieve their dreams, utilizing an insightful blend of inspiring stories and practical tips for getting started, going big, and going home.

As part of these lessons, Linda spotlights some notable Endeavor Entrepreneurs from around the world and their successes, including:


Since its release, “Crazy Is A Compliment” has been named a top business book for the fall by Fortune Magazine and Business Insider, reaching #11 on the New York Times’ best sellers list as well as the top 50 books on Amazon.com. Learn more about Linda’s appearances in the media and hear her discuss lessons from the book by clicking here.

You can also join Linda’s #TeamCrazy on social media with the hashtag #CrazyIsACompliment to discuss the book. In addition, you can join the likes of LinkedIn’s Reid Hoffman, AOL’s Steve Case and other top entrepreneurs by sharing your #MyCrazyMoment video.

In the Media – Linda Rottenberg

October 2014 Newsletter

OctNewsletterTo view Endeavor’s October newsletter, a recap of all the top news stories from the previous month, please CLICK HERE.

Reminder: To receive our monthly newsletters by email, please enter your email address in the sign-up box at the bottom of our homepage.

WeXchange 2014 Forum Empowers Female Entrepreneurs with a Focus on Latin America

1919650_669277579815095_9025990230053879794_nWeXchange is a platform dedicated to promoting the development of female entrepreneurs with a focus on Latin America by providing key networking, mentoring and growth opportunities. The 2014 WeXchange Forum will take place December 11th-12th in Miami, FL as the premiere gathering for stakeholders and audiences interested in Latin American entrepreneurship and the empowerment of women-owned businesses. This year’s event will take place after the 56th Endeavor International Selection Panel in Miami and feature keynotes from Endeavor co-founder and CEO Linda Rottenberg as well as Endeavor Entrepreneur and Beleza Natural CEO Leila Velez.

Find out more about the event, as well as registration details, by visiting www.wexchange.co.

The Power of Scale-Ups: Harvard Business Review and the World Economic Forum Spotlight High-Impact Entrepreneurship


Scale-up companies, defined by Endeavor Insight as companies more than three years old with a minimum of 20% average annual employment growth, have become a major force in transforming economies around the world. Bringing focus to the power of scale-ups, the Harvard Business Review recently featured an article co-authored by Endeavor President Fernando Fabre and Babson College professor Dan Isenberg emphasizing scale-ups, not start-ups, as the main drivers of economic change. The article takes a specific look at The Global Scale Up Declaration, an effort formed between top entrepreneurship influencers to offer a rallying point for the movement. Sign and share the Declaration at ScaleUpDeclaration.org and join the social conversation with #ScaleUpDeclaration.

In addition, a recent World Economic Forum report titled “The Bold Ones – High-Impact Entrepreneurs Who Transform Industries” takes an in-depth look at the power of high-impact entrepreneurs and their role in innovating industries worldwide. Drawing from surveys of entrepreneurs in EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year program as well as research from Endeavor, the report provides insight on how these entrepreneurs and their scale-up ventures accelerate access to new markets and become leading businesses that create high-value jobs.

In the HBR piece, Isenberg and Fabre emphasize that, despite the buzz around “startups”, the U.S. has experienced a decades long decline in entrepreneurship. Instead, more and more American companies are surviving and growing beyond 16 years. These growing businesses – known as “scale-ups” – represent the kind of long-term entrepreneurship that improves societies, jobs, quality of life, and innovation. Entrepreneurial scale-ups are companies – young or old – which are run and owned by growth-driven leaders, and which at any stage of their lives may launch a new growth trajectory. New startups are easier to count, but they alone don’t have the positive impact on economies that growing a company does. As a result, in advance of November’s Global Entrepreneurship Weekthe Declaration was developed in a coordinated effort to focus more of the entrepreneurship conversation on scale-ups and their positive impacts.

View the full HBR article by clicking here.

The WEF report found that the over 600 companies in the sample (1/10,000th of the total number of U.S. companies) have created over 160,000 jobs in just the last two years (nearly 1/20th of the total U.S. economy). These ventures have outperformed comparable financial indices by a substantial margin and have created significant wealth for owners, employees, and customers. In addition, the report features insights from Endeavor CEO and co-founder Linda Rottenberg, who is recognized as an early pioneer of the high-impact entrepreneurship movement.

Read and download the full report by clicking here.

The Global Scale Up Declaration – Join the #ScaleUpDeclaration Conversation

To accelerate and highlight the scale up conversation, with a group of entrepreneurship influencers, we have developed this Scale Up Declaration, which we offer as a rallying point for what the entrepreneurship discussion should focus on, and what that can accomplish. Sign and share the Declaration today!

Endeavor Entrepreneurs from Greece, Indonesia and Malaysia Speak at the 2014 ASEAN Business Club Forum in Singapore

ASEANThe 2014 ASEAN Business Club Forum took place in Singapore this month and brought together more than 300 business leaders from across the Asia Pacific region to tackle issues in trade, industry and economic development. Endeavor Entrepreneurs from Greece’s Out There Media, Indonesia’s Kartuku and Malaysia’s GridMarkets were invited to speak at the event to address innovations in their respective industries and the impact of entrepreneurship in the region. 


Endeavor VP Cindy Ko speaking at the 2014 ABC Forum

 ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) is a ten-member bloc which includes such countries as Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam. The organization aims to accelerate economic growth and promote political and social progress among its members.  The Business Club Forum is ASEAN’s leading business event focused on private sector growth and the acceleration of the organization’s regional agenda. Top executives, entrepreneurs and policymakers from an array of industries gathered to identify barriers and opportunities to the ASEAN Economic Community. Among them, Endeavor’s VP of International Expansion Cindy Ko discussed recent Endeavor Insight research on the growth of Silicon Valley and the impact of “entrepreneurial mafias” in supporting ecosystems of startups and scaleups.


Endeavor network members with AirAsia’s Tony Fernandes

Serving as an example of Endeavor’s global network, Greece’s Kerstin Trikalitis, co-founder of mobile advertising solutions firm Out There Media, was given the opportunity to present an “Idea Capsule” talk on location-based mobile marketing  strategies. Indonesian entrepreneur Niki Luhur, founder of Kartuku, presented on the cashless payment and digital transaction industry, drawing on his experience developing and promoting Kartuku’s innovate payments network. Endeavor Malaysia’s first entrepreneur and GridMarkets founder Hakim Karim discussed his company’s business model and the untapped potential in the data server sector. In addition to the entrepreneurs who spoke, Endeavor Malaysia Board Member, Forum Chairman and AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes gave a featured keynote stressing the importance of cooperation between the public sector and private businesses in the region.

Learn more about the 2014 ASEAN Business Club Forum by clicking here and see the links below for videos of each talk.

Jordan’s The Online Project Named A Top 40 Social Media Agency by R3 Worldwide

the online projectJordan’s The Online Project, founded by Endeavor Entrepreneurs Zafer Younis and Ramzi Halabywas named a top social media agency to work for by consulting firm R3 Worldwide in their “Social 40″ ranking. As the Middle East’s leading social media agency, The Online Project develops and executes social media strategies for Fortune 500 companies and high profile organizations operating in the region.

Founded in 1972, R3 Worldwide is a top consultancy specializing in agency management consulting, with on-the-ground representation in Asia Pacific, Europe and Latin America. The company’s Social 40 list is a new initiative that  celebrates 40 of the most creative and innovative social/digital agencies around the world.  The selection criteria consisted of  quantitative and qualitative analysis that looks for proven client results, creative strategy, and a global reach. R3 screened over 100 companies against the criteria for the Social 40 ranking.

Ramzi and Zafer Younis co-founded both Modern Media, an independent radio broadcasting company, and The Online Project. Endeavor Insight’s analysis of Amman’s tech sector found that Ramzi and Zafer have mentored or inspired the founders of 16 different Amman tech companies. Since selection by Endeavor in 2010, the pair have received services regionally and globally, having attended three Endeavor SXSW tours. The entrepreneurs have also given back to Endeavor – Zafer has twice served as a panelist at ISPs and donated to Endeavor Jordan.

See the full Social 40 list by clicking here.

Endeavor Catalyst Participates in Recent Funding Round for Uruguay’s Scanntech

Endeavor-Catalyst-LogoEndeavor Catalyst recently joined the funding round for Uruguay’s Scanntech, a leading technology platform that connects retailers in emerging markets to consumer products companies, financial institutions and more. Marking Endeavor Catalyst’s seventeenth investment, the Scanntech news demonstrates how innovative entrepreneurial ventures are continuing to attract global interest in the world’s most unexpected markets.


Scanntech currently operates in seven countries in Latin America and represents the first Uruguay-based company in the Endeavor Catalyst portfolio.  The firm’s latest investment round included the International Finance Corporation, part of the World Bank Group, Sequoia Capital, an earlier Scanntech investor, and other firms. Entrepreneur Founder and Endeavor Entrepreneur Raul Polakof is revolutionizing the way independent and traditional grocery stores in emerging markets integrate with Consumer Goods Companies. The company’s technology platform connects traditional stores with global consumer products companies, financial institutions and telecommunications firms, and government services.

 “We’d like to thank everyone at Endeavor for making this investment happen,” said Polakof, who has been an Endeavor Entrepreneur since 2001.  “One of our goals has always been to show that entrepreneurs can make an enormous difference in emerging market countries.”  The new investment round will fund further expansion across the region, including Brazil, Peru and Colombia as well as into other emerging markets.

Since joining Endeavor in 2001, Polakof has been an active network member, serving as both a mentor and, formerly, as a board member for Endeavor Uruguay. Raul has received local mentorship from Endeavor’s expert advisors with a particular focus on areas of expansion, litigation, and publicity. As an entrepreneur, he has also participated in numerous global workshops, Immersion Tours and Endeavor Summits. As a company, Scanntech has benefited from a range of Endeavor talent programs including the G-Lab program, EY Vantage program and the eMBA program

About Endeavor Catalyst

Endeavor Catalyst is a passive co-investment vehicle that allows Endeavor Global to invest in Endeavor Entrepreneurs in a neutral, unbiased way. The main goal of this program is to use the returns of the investment to support Endeavor’s operations. The fund also contributes to Endeavor’s mission as it promotes professional third-party angel and venture capital investors to take a stronger interest in emerging market investment opportunities. Learn more about Endeavor Catalyst by clicking here.

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