Entrepreneurial mindset and innovative thinking are the foundation of a healthy growth of the economy, which in turn ensures prosperity and an adequate level of development for all inhabitants. This is particularly important in less stable economic environments and countries where youth unemployment is quite high, as in Bosnia and Herzegovina, for example. CEP has been with project ‘Empowering BiH young entrepreneurs’ for the fourth consecutive year supporting young Bosnian entrepreneurs and young people with entrepreneurial ideas who would like to develop and upgrade/advance their ideas. CEP assist them to meet and connect, as together, with different approaches and broader pressures, they can influence the entrepreneurial climate in their own country. Through our engagement we brought together over 500 individuals who are aware that for making some changes, they must be active and take part for the changes – only in this way they will be able to change their environment for the better.

CEP with leading regional startup conference PODIM, which takes place every year in May in Maribor, organizes a competition through which the best entrepreneurial ideas and presentations are selected. For 20 young entrepreneurs (team members and their mentors) transport, accommodation and a ticket to the PODIM conference are provided. We are thus spreading their knowledge of entrepreneurial steps, offering them the opportunity to meet potential investors, and, last but not least, with the like-minded from the entire Alpe-Adria region.

Young people have to submit a presentation of their entrepreneurial idea for the competition, which is then reviewed by the expert commission. As we have seen in recent years that presentations submitted from the region could be better, we will organize a workshop, where young people will find out all about the competition, the conference and get opportunity to pitch in front experts and colleagues. At the same time, they will be able to listen to experienced investors on how to scale the company’s growth, when/how investors decide to support the idea and what are the forecasts for investments in the region in 2018. The whole workshop program is available here.

The workshop will be held on Wednesday, February 14 2018, in Sarajevo, at the premises of Networks Sarajevo. Participation is free, but the previous registration is recommended here.

The project ‘Empowering BiH young entrepreneurs’ is part of our program activities, financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Republic of Slovenia in the framework of Slovenia’s development cooperation. Similar project in the framework of the Slovenia’s development cooperation is running as well for empowering youth entrepreneurs in Kosovo. More about the workshop in Pristina can be read at this link.

As CEP events were well attended and involved actors provided very good feedback, some countries from the region expressed their interest for similar program. CEP will therefore this year, with support of British Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO), widen its activities to four additional states – Albania, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia – through program Start:up Balkan. Read more about it here.

Read this article in Slovene language.