Development cooperation ,29.03.2016

Capacity building project for innovative start-up enterprises in developing countries


The project develops the capacity of innovative start-up enterprises in developing countries in order to improve business and competitiveness and attract equity investors. The project organizes open national competitions in some 20 developing countries jointly with a local innovation hub, World Bank or other organization in order to select the start-up entrepreneurs into the global business accelerator program. The enterprises will participate in the capacity development program, many networking events and Slush conference in Finland. Innovation hub managers will also participate in the program. The project will familiarize the participants with the Finnish innovation ecosystem and pave the way for new partnerships between enterprises, CSOs and education institutions in developing countries and Finland. Start-up enterprises are important for growth and diversification of developing economies. Young enterprises create new jobs, livelihoods and income-generating opportunities for people. The enterprises to be selected in the program are, moreover, so-called impact businesses whose business is to solve societal and environmental challenges and advance inclusion of the poor and easily marginalized people in economic activity. Solutions can be for any development challenge such as health, education, agriculture, public administration or climate change and, hence, advance many human rights. The direct beneficiaries are the start-up entrepreneurs and innovation hub managers in developing countries to be accepted in the program. In the long run, the program beneficiaries include people in developing countries, especially those who find employment in the enterprises and their partners. A significant proportion of them are young people and women. The program will be implemented by Startup Sauna Ltd. KEO-20 proposes 150,000 euro support for the project for 2016.

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Funding decision  29.03.2016

150 000 €

Field of activity

  • Business support services and institutions 100%

Funding channel




Code for the object of funding