By Tamara Pupic
The Venture 2017 launches $1 million global start-up competition in the GCC
Chivas Regal has launched the third edition of The Venture, its annual search for the most promising social enterprise worldwide.
The competition, launched in 2014, is open to any for-profit-start-up that creates both financial value and a positive impact on the lives of others.
The shortlisted social entrepreneurs will get the opportunity to win a share of $1 million in financial investment, contacts and global exposure for their company, as well as mentorship from world-famous business mentors.
This year, 32 countries across 6 continents will be taking part while only the most promising entrant from each country will be selected as a global finalist. They will have the opportunity to take part in an accelerator week programme and travel to the USA for Chivas The Venture final event in July 2017, and compete for a share in the prize fund.
Previous global final representatives from The Gulf include Sahar Wahbeh of Dumyé, a business that makes handcrafted, eco-friendly, personalised rag dolls that serve a social purpose and, Charles Blaschke of Taka Solutions, a business that installs technology in existing buildings to save energy and money.
Last year’s global competition saw five grand finalists pitch to a panel of judges that included, Eva Longoria, Sonal Shah, Joe Huff and Alexandre Ricard in New York City.
Conceptos Plásticos, a Colombian social start-up that transforms plastic waste into building materials for vulnerable communities, was awarded the largest contribution from The Venture fund, receiving $300,000.
Speaking about the competition, Richard Black, Chivas Regal global brand director, said: “Promoting business as a force for good is a priority for Chivas Regal. There is a clear and growing desire around the world for change, people want to support and associate themselves with companies that are doing more than just making money.
“Since its launch in 2014, The Venture has already given $2m of funding to aspiring businesses from Chile to Japan, and impacted over 200,000 lives. We are excited to be able to pledge another $1m this year to help the next generation of global entrepreneurs make a difference.”