We are pleased to announce that three new members of our Endeavor Global Board of Directors — Reid Hoffman, Matt Brown, and Michael Ahearn — were inducted at our Global Board meeting in New York last week.
Reid Hoffman is the Co-Founder & Chairman of LinkedIn, and partner at Greylock Partners. Prior to LinkedIn, Hoffman was Executive VP of Paypal, and held management roles at other significant technology companies. In addition to LinkedIn and Endeavor, Hoffman serves on the Board of Directors for SixApart, Kiva.org, and Mozilla.
Matthew C. Brown is a Founder and Managing Principal of Capital Integration Systems LLC (“CAIS”), and brings 20 years of experience in financial services with a focus on global marketing and distribution of alternative investment funds. Over his career, Brown has built and managed investment firms and platforms and has represented industry-leading investment managers. No stranger to Endeavor, he has previously served for a number of years on Endeavor’s Global Advisory Board and on the boards of Endeavor South Africa and Endeavor Turkey.
Michael J. Ahearn serves as Executive Chairman of First Solar, after serving as CEO from 2000-2009. Ahearn was previously a Partner and President of the equity investment firm, JWMA, and practiced law as a partner at Gallagher & Kennedy. He has served on numerous boards including those of Homeward Bound and the German Marshall Fund of the United States.
Nearshore Americas, a media website covering the global services outsourcing industry, released its Top 50 Power Ranking of Most Influential Executives for 2010.
Gabriel Rozman, Chairman of the Board of Endeavor Uruguay and EVP Emerging Markets of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), earned the number one position. The report highlights Rozman’s success in expanding TCS’s global presence by employing over 7,000 Latin Americans, as well as his philanthropic involvement with Endeavor.
Endeavor Entrepreneur Martin Migoya, CEO and Co-Founder of Globant, was awarded the number ten spot and is the youngest executive in the top 10 ranking. The publication highlights Migoya’s vision of outsourcing as a means “[to] promote the professional development of people without [them] having to emigrate from their place of birth, and thus contributing to a sustainable growth of their communities.”
In conjunction with the ISP in Istanbul, Endeavor also hosted its first Middle East & Turkey Mentor Capital Summit, marking a rare gathering of top entrepreneurs and pioneering venture capitalists in the region. Twenty-four top investors from the Middle East, Europe, and the US joined the Summit to discuss the development of the region’s venture capital ecosystem, and to evaluate business pitches from four Endeavor Entrepreneurs graduating from the Mentor Capital Program.
Beyond providing entrepreneurs with exposure and feedback, the pitch forum succeeded in facilitating proper introductions to potential investors, several of whom expressed significant follow-up interest. The Summit closed with a private workshop for MCP graduates. The next Mentor Capital Summit will take place October 6-7 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
In a recent article on Executive Magazine, entitled “A new American intervention,” Annelle Sheline covered the shifts in American foreign policy to a softer, more pro-business approach to fostering democracy in the Middle East. As Secretary of State Hilary Clinton asserts, “a strong economic foundation and a stable middle-class” are key components in fostering democracy in the Middle East.
Annelle points out that while it is not known yet just how effective the State Department will be in its efforts, she trumpets the existence of Endeavor as an active and independent organization in the region that has given entrepreneurs access to mentors and angel investors in Morocco, Turkey and Egypt in recent years. Especially important is the framework that Endeavor uses in the Middle East, a framework that Elmira Bayrasli, policy and outreach coordinator for Endeavor Global, says is “driven by finding local business leaders and local networks that will then define how [they build] their own framework.”
In a June 2010 article in the Harvard Business Review, “How to Start an Entrepreneurial Revolution,” Daniel J. Isenberg acknowledges High-Impact Entrepreneurship as a key driver of economic growth—and Endeavor as an organization helping to make it happen. Support organizations, he argues, “should focus on ambitious, growth-oriented entrepreneurs who address large potential markets…[since] 500 microfinanced sole proprietorships and one rapidly globalizing 500-person operation create the same number of jobs…Even one success can have a surprisingly stimulating effect on an entrepreneurship ecosystem – by igniting the imagination of the public and inspiring imitators.”
Between February and April, our new research arm–the Endeavor Center for High-Impact Entrepreneurship–surveyed over 200 employees from eight Endeavor companies in South Africa. The goal was to assess if and how these companies are affecting their employees’ standard of living, in such areas as education, health, and income. Among other findings, it was determined that employees’ average monthly compensation was twice the average for all South African employees. Families of employees at Endeavor companies also have better housing and greater access to health care. Nearly two-thirds of respondents said they want to start their own company in the future. Starting this summer, the Center for High-Impact Entrepreneurship will expand the study to other countries where Endeavor operates.
Congratulations to Endeavor Uruguay on a decade of excellent work. Endeavor Uruguay kicked off their 10th-year anniversary celebrations with a panel last month. Board chairman Gabriel Rozman spoke about the organization’s successes, highlighting that Uruguay’s Endeavor Entrepreneurs comprise 0.6% of the country’s total GDP.
The Minister of Economy, Fernando Lorenzo, and IDB Representative Tracy Betts were also on-hand acknowledging Endeavor’s impact. Several top national TV stations and newspapers covered the event. In the past decade, Endeavor Uruguay has selected and supported 55 entrepreneurs with total 2009 revenues of US$172 million.
Left to right: Tracy Betts, Fernando Lorenzo, Gabriel Rozman, Laura Raffo
Endeavor Mexico hosted roughly 100 entrepreneurs at its annual CEO Summit on May 26th. Billed as an “anti-conference,” the Summit took place at a restored early 20th century cultural center in Mexico City. Highlights of the event included an introductory talk by Endeavor Global board member Michael Ahearn, Executive Chairman of First Solar, and a “speed dating” session where Entrepreneurs had three minutes each to introduce themselves and their businesses to each other.
The one-day Summit ended with Ahearn and seven Endeavor Mexico board members including former finance minister Pedro Aspe hosting a dozen entrepreneurs each at individual bars set up in the Center’s courtyard. Signature drinks were provided by Endeavor firm Tequila Milagro.
Endeavor Global board member Mike Ahearn tends the bar and leads the conversation with Endeavor Mexico entrepreneurs at the recent summit.
Endeavor Turkey has launched a highly-publicized partnership with Akbank, one of the largest private banks in Turkey. The partnership provides Endeavor Entrepreneurs with a $20 million credit pool, with access to more favorable rates, terms, and payment options than the market offers. The average loan amount offered per entrepreneur is one of the highest offered in Turkey.
A ceremony and press conference took place on May 25th to celebrate the partnership, which could serve as a best practice example for other Turkish banks providing banking services to entrepreneurs. Endeavor Turkey recognizes Vice-Chair Suzan Sabanci Dinçer for initiating the project, Finance Committee Members (Bülent Çelebi, Mahmut Ünlü, Mustafa Say, Murat Özyegin) for offering guidance and feedback throughout all stages, and Chairman Özcan Tahincioglu for his continued support.
Latin America’s leading branded-entertainment agency, FiRe Advertainment, has partnered with Endeavor Argentina to produce 30 paid mini-documentary films — each highlighting an accomplished Argentine entrepreneur. The films have begun to air on FOX cable channels and in movie theaters across Argentina. To learn more about the project, see the recent writeup in Advertising Age.
Globant, an Endeavor-supported software developer, is one of the companies featured. “In seven years, it already has 2,500 employees and Argentinians already consider it as the local Google,” said FiRe founder and president Rodrigo Figueroa Reyes. Click here to view the promo video for the project.