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Endeavor and Linda Rottenberg Profiled in The Christian Science Monitor

The Christian Science Monitor, a U.S.-based international news publication, recently profiled Endeavor CEO Linda Rottenberg and the story of Endeavor, spotlighting the organization’s journey and its rapidly growing global impact. In particular, the article calls […]

April 16th, 2014 — by admin

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Celebrity John Leguizamo Praises Endeavor Colombia Company in WSJ

  Bogota-born actor and comedian John Leguizamo recommended Endeavor Colombia company Mario Hernandez as a “must visit” in a full page story on Bogota in the Adventure & Travel section of The Wall Street Journal. […]

April 23rd, 2013 — by admin

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Endeavor highlighted at Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Istanbul [with video]

Last month, 120 Endeavor Network members participated in the 2nd Annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Turkey. CEO Linda Rottenberg was a keynote speaker alongside Vice President Joe Biden, and the work of a number of Endeavor Entrepreneurs was featured. For the full story on the summit click here. Also check out the video below…

Tips to make any business succeed

Reprinted from under30ceo.com. See original post here.

By David T. Domzalski

I wanted to share with you a portion of Financial Bin’s recently released book called Entrepreneur Intervention: Triumphs & Failures of Entrepreneurs. The part included below is written by Chris Sonjeow, founder of LoveBook. Chris talks about what he has learned since starting his company and I think it is something we can all benefit from.

Over the past 3 years these are the things I‘ve learned to help make a business successful:

1. Find Smart People.

Always surround yourself with smart, talented people. If you do not know any, join a networking group and find them. Being an entrepreneur is a series of highs and lows. You need to surround yourself with people who understand that when it gets low, it is not the end of the world. It is just an opportunity to grow.

2. Always Have a Plan.

The plan is not set in stone, but you need guidelines and a revenue model. I always get approached by people asking me about a business idea they have. The first thing I ask them is: “Who‘s writing you checks?” If they cannot answer that right away, I know they do not have a revenue model. That is not to say that all business ideas need one at first, but would-be entrepreneurs should not mix “hobbies” with business.

A good plan should take you into multiple years and show growth and revenue generated. This will help you understand how diverse your products or services should be. You will be able to do the rough math to figure out how many products you need to sell or services you need to complete before you hire your first employee. And do not worry if plans change, they always do. They are strictly a guide to keep you from going too far off the original concept.

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Wharton professor’s advice: “Fatten up” your customers

Reprinted from under30ceo.com. See the original post here.

by Peter Fader

I often use the metaphor of fishing as a way to explain new customer acquisition. From the firm’s perspective, there is a great big ocean out there full of prospective customers of all different shapes and sizes. First we have to decide how we want to catch them: do we want to cast our nets far and wide (a broad acquisition strategy), or throw spears at individual fish that we believe to be particularly juicy and plump (a targeted acquisition strategy)? That’s a tough decision and worthy of two full lectures in my MBA elective course, “Managing the Value of Customer Relationships”

But let’s focus on what happens after we catch the fish: once we have acquired our newest batch of customers, how do we fatten them up as much as possible, i.e., enhance their long-term value to the firm?

Customer development – along with acquisition and retention — is one of the primary firm activities that drive customer value. It describes the tactics that a firm employs to create the maximum value for its existing customers over the lifetime of their relationship. My students can now recite by heart what I casually label the Great American Question: “Would you like fries with that?” It’s a classic example of cross-selling, one of a range of activities at the heart of customer development.

For companies considering adopting a customer-centric strategy, customer development is often one of the most visible and alluring selling points: if a firm knows its individual customers better, it can better tailor its product/service offerings to their needs — and thus capture a greater share of their total dollars. Indeed, a recent study from Forrester Research suggests that nearly 90% of managers in large North American financial services firms identified increased cross-selling as “very important” or “critical.”

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10 ways young entrepreneurs fail

Reprinted from under30ceo.com. See original post here.

By Jared O’Toole

I had a conversation awhile back with a young entrepreneur that frustrated me beyond belief. It went something like this…

“I’m looking for some advice on this amazing idea I have but I can’t tell you anything about it. All I can say is we will be competing with sites like eBay and when this idea gets out everybody is going to try and take it. I mean seriously its amazing and there is nothing like it out there where it’s a win, win, win for everyone involved. We’re projected to do about a quarter of eBay’s business in 2 years and eventually make them irrelevant. We will be launching in 6 months and I mean it will be a no brainer for people to use it. I just can’t tell you anything about it.” – Extremely excited young entrepreneur

Now I’m not saying this kid doesn’t have a brilliant idea or he isn’t the next Mark Zuckerberg but a conversation like this sets off a million alerts in my head. I’ve seen it all before and while it’s passionate, it’s a mindset that sets you up to fall off a cliff. Here are 10 things that go off in my head when I have a conversation like that.

1. Being super secret

You may think you have the greatest idea in the world and if you even give a single hint at what it is everyone is going to steal it. The reality is that no one cares about your idea until it makes a million dollars. Odds are most people won’t have you vision or understand why your solution is that much better than what’s already out there.

Now there may be certain parts of your idea that make it special but that doesn’t mean you have to give it all away. You have to be able to get feedback, advice and thoughts from your potential customers but that doesn’t mean showing them the nuts & bolts of your algorithms. You will do a lot more good than harm by letting people in rather than blocking the entire world out.

2. All knowing

Every young business owner makes the mistake that they have all the answers and knows more than mentors or even their customers. No one else has this great idea or has done it before so how can they be able to help?

The best thing you can do when starting out is seek all the advice possible. Even if its not directly about your business you need to learn about the industry, the leaders and everything you can about the business world. You have to be learning everyday to succeed in business.

3. Dreaming of a billion before $1

Who doesn’t have a billion dollar idea? Ask any group of first time business owners and you will have multiple people proclaim their company will do just a billion dollars or so in the near future. Many of them will make claims of being the next Facebook, eBay, Amazon and so on.

Now it’s important to dream big because its those dreams that get you through those long nights and days of work before you ever see a dime. Just understand you have a long way to go before a billion, million or even a salary that supports you should be mentioned. Where, when, and how is that first dollar being made?

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Entrepreneurs – the best ways to show confidence without being cocky

Reprinted from under30ceo.com. See original post here.

By Matt Wilson

There is nothing worse in the world of business than classic egotistical arrogance. Everyone know’s that guy who just can’t help but tell everyone how awesome he is. But the truth is–if he was really that cool, why would he have to tell everyone?

The real trick is mastering the confidence that comes with humility. Emotional intelligence is not something that everyone is blessed with, and it’s something everyone can work on.

We’ve all recognized the kind of people that others want to rally behind and listen to. The man or woman who walks into the room and commands everyone’s attention, but didn’t have to raise his or her voice one bit. You know they’re confident, but they’d never say it. This is the art of quiet confidence.

Confidence is not something that comes from what you drive, how much attention you draw to yourself or how much money you’ve made in the past. Confidence is about what you truly think you can produce in the present. It’s your true feeling of self worth. Entrepreneurs usually have too much or too little and finding the right amount and how to show it, is a delicate balance.

Here are 8 ways to boost your confidence while remaining humble…

1. Learn the Art of the Humble Brag– Urban dictionary says a humble brag is “a form of self promotion where the promoter thinks he is, almost subliminally, bragging about himself in the context of a humble statement or complaint. Everyone listening thinks he is a jackass.” Read: This is not what we’re going for.

In the case of our humble brag, you’ll want to speak confidently about yourself without boasting. During the course of a conversation, you’ll inevitably have the opportunity to talk about yourself. Most people who don’t like to talk about themselves, simply aren’t confident, even if they are super successful. They think by being close-lipped about themselves, they are being humble, but what they are really doing is selling themselves short. Everyone needs to know how to sell themselves, while keeping in mind, the best products sell themselves once the consumer understands what the product is. You really don’t need to brag or sell at all if you…

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Endeavor Entrepreneur Jorge Soto selected as one of 30 Global Shapers by World Economic Forum

Endeavor Entrepreneur since 2011 and co-founder of CitiVox Jorge Soto has been selected to attend the World Economic Forum in Davos as one of 30 Global Shapers from around the world.

Acknowledging that half of the world’s population is below the age of 27, the World Economic Forum created their new Global Shapers Community to supplement their existing network of Young Global Leaders in an effort to “provide youth with a global platform to shape the future.” Defined as up-and-coming global leaders between the ages of 20 and 30, Global Shapers must demonstrate a deep passion for entrepreneurship for the global public interest and a commitment to develop their leadership potential towards serving their communities.

Jorge, along with his partner Oscar Salazar, founded CitiVox in 2010 with the hope of enhancing the relationship between citizens and their governments. Through the use of crowd-sourcing and cloud-based technologies, CitiVox provides real-time report management to local governments based on compiled data received from local citizens. CitiVox services not only provide vital information to municipal authorities, but also increase civic engagement and government accountability. Jorge’s vision of utilizing emerging technologies as a tool for creating tangible social change has been rapidly reaching fruition as CitiVox continues to expand, with hopes of reaching 15 million citizens in 15 countries by 2013.

Jorge undoubtedly exhibits the best of these qualities; we congratulate him on his selection and wish him all the best at Davos!

Endeavor mourns the loss of an invaluable mentor

Alexis with wife Marcela

Endeavor pays its respects to Alexis Rovzar, a member of the Endeavor Mexico board who passed away this month. In his work as a committed philanthropist both in Mexico and the United States, Alexis amassed a loyal following of international peers and colleagues who have described him as a wonderful friend. Endeavor Mexico received pro bono help during its formative years by Alexis through White & Case, the law firm to which Alexis dedicated his services for most of his professional career.

Along with serving on the Boards of numerous other academic and philanthropic institutions, Alexis served as Secretary of the Board of Endeavor Mexico for 10 years, actively engaging as a mentor and counselor throughout that time. With 100% of its Entrepreneurs participating in the Give-Back Program in 2011, and a new program to promote small- and medium-sized enterprise listings on the Mexican Stock Exchange, Endeavor Mexico makes a promising bid to continue Alexis’s legacy of generosity and humanitarian enterprise. Alexis will be truly missed.

Endeavor company Aorta acquired by .Mobi


Translated from the announcement on Valor.com.br.

.Mobi, a company controlled by the RBS Group (one of the largest media groups in Brazil), has acquired Endeavor-supported firm Aorta, run by Endeavor Entrepreneurs Patrick Lisbona, Antonio Carlos Soares, and Gustavo Ziller.

The acquisition makes .Mobi the largest mobile marketing company in Brazil. The .Mobi group has an increase in revenue of 45% to 50% with the acquisition, reaching a value of up to $35 million reais (~US $17M). The group will also increase the number of employees from 170 to 270 professionals. Aorta has a portfolio of approximately 50 major brands with presence in the country and has produced more than 100 applications, with 2 million downloads in the last year.

“The group’s intention is to become the largest segment in Latin America,” said Gustavo, Aorta’s managing director and partner. According to Gustavo, the Brazilian market for mobile marketing is growing rapidly and is already attracting major international companies operating in the sector. The acquisition of Aorta will allow .Mobi to be more competitive. It is estimated that the market for mobile marketing will double in 2012 from R $1.8 billion to R $3.6 billion.

Antonio, CEO and partner of Aorta, said the deal was made in the last seven months. The company’s board and members will stay; he and Patrick will leave to invest in other companies.

.Mobi was founded in 2007 and since 2008 has joined the RBS Group’s multimedia platform. In addition to .Mobi and Aorta, other companies in the group include fingertips, MonsterJuice, Minucom, DP7, Redemobi, Finggers, and Mobile Hands. The Group .Mobi has offices in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Porto Alegre, Recife, Curitiba, Belo Horizonte and London.

Attention MBA students: become an eMBA intern this summer!

The 2012 eMBA job board is now open! If you are an MBA student interested in working with an Endeavor Entrepreneur this summer, please CLICK HERE browse our first batch of project offerings, and apply to the ones that interest you.

We advise you to first register and upload your resume (no cover letter needed) and then apply to projects (no need to upload your resume again, but please do include a cover letter).

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About the eMBA Program

Each year, Endeavor recruits MBA students from leading US business schools to spend 10 weeks during the summer working with our entrepreneurs on-site as “eMBAs.” The three primary areas of focus for the eMBA projects are strategy, operations, and financing. Typically 30 – 35 MBAs are placed on the ground each summer.

Thus far, over 300 MBA students have been placed with entrepreneurs in all of Endeavor’s country locations after a highly competitive application process. Endeavor ranks among the top 2% of recruiters at Harvard Business School & Stanford, and recruits from other leading schools including MIT-Sloan, Wharton, Columbia, Kellogg, Yale SOM, and INSEAD.

Click here to see an Endeavor Entrepreneur describing the impact of an eMBA on his company in South Africa.

You may also browse a selection of eMBA blog posts written by last year’s alumni on our Voices from the Field page.

To learn more about the eMBA Program, please contact us at emba@endeavor.org.

Seth Godin: The trap of social media noise

Reprinted from sethgodin.typepad.com. See the original post here.

If we put a number on it, people will try to make the number go up.

Now that everyone is a marketer, many people are looking for a louder megaphone, a chance to talk about their work, their career, their product… and social media looks like the ideal soapbox, a free opportunity to shout to the masses.

But first, we’re told to make that number go up. Increase the number of fans, friends and followers, so your shouts will be heard. The problem of course is that more noise is not better noise.

In Corey’s words, the conventional, broken wisdom is:

- Follow a ton of people to get people to follow back
- Focus on the # of followers, not the interests of followers or your relationship with them.
- Pump links through the social platform (take your pick, or do them all!)
- Offer nothing of value, and no context. This is a megaphone, not a telephone.
- Think you’re winning, because you’re playing video games (highest follower count wins!)

This looks like winning (the numbers are going up!), but it’s actually a double-edged form of losing. First, you’re polluting a powerful space, turning signals into noise and bringing down the level of discourse for everyone. And second, you’re wasting your time when you could be building a tribe instead, could be earning permission, could be creating a channel where your voice is actually welcomed.

Leadership (even idea leadership) scares many people, because it requires you to own your words, to do work that matters. The alternative is to be a junk dealer.

The game theory pushes us into one of two directions: either be better at pump and dump than anyone else, get your numbers into the millions, outmass those that choose to use mass and always dance at the edge of spam (in which the number of those you offend or turn off forever keep increasing), or

Relentlessly focus. Prune your message and your list and build a reputation that’s worth owning and an audience that cares.

Only one of these strategies builds an asset of value.

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