On September 26, a new generation of the New Countdown project participants presented their business plans to the Association of Private Entrepreneurs. It was the final presentation of the potential entrepreneurs who showed their successful completion of educational courses. Also, the graduates demonstrated their capacity to generate new ideas and to develop them from just a draft into a real business plan for its further implementation. The jury evaluated each presented plan, so that all speakers received a valuable feedback and contacts for a successful start-up.
According to the head of the Association of Private Entrepreneurs Olexandr Chumak, the project aims at improving the business environment in Ukraine. It will also give the entrepreneurs an understanding of the basic business terms and tools as well as will help them to find support and funding for their initiatives.
This has already been the third stage of the project which involved 75 participants. The previous two stages included 200 members, selected from a pool of the most motivated and creative candidates, having the desire to set up their own business.
“At first only demobilized servicemen and internally displaced persons could participate in the project. But this year, a certain number of places has been given to Kharkivites. After the selection and elimination rounds, the potential entrepreneurs were invited to a 52-hour training program. During this program, mentors and leading business specialists helped the students to gain an overall understanding of main business processes. As a result of two previous stages, more than 50 out of 120 presented projects have already been supported. Consequently, these funded projects provided 180 additional jobs,” Chumak stated.
Reference: The New Countdown project is a program for supporting small businesses of IDPs which is being implemented with the support of the International Renaissance Foundation. A partner of the program in Kharkiv is the Private Employers’ Association NGO.
Since September 2017 the project has become a part of the facilitation program for small and medium-sized enterprises in Kharkiv region for the period of 2016-2020. Currently, it receives additional support from the local budget.
Text and photo: Maryna Kosenko