U.S. Embassy in Ethiopia and EDC Forge a Partnership To Foster Entrepreneurship in Ethiopia.
The objective of collaboration between the Entrepreneurship Development Center (EDC) and the United States Embassy in Ethiopia is to foster entrepreneurship development in Ethiopia. Through a pro bono partnership, the parties agree to connect successful seasoned entrepreneurs (mentors) with young Ethiopian entrepreneurs (mentees) that are at the startup stage or looking to expand their business. The mentors will provide ongoing technical assistance to the mentees for a duration of up to 7 months with a specific, measurable output, agreed to by the parties in advance, to be achieved by the end of the mentorship period.
Selection of Mentors and Mentees
EDC and the U.S. Embassy will be responsible for selecting mentors who are successful local entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurs will come from a variety of industry and must fulfill one or all of the below criteria:
• Must be a business owner in good standing
• Must be an Ethiopian active registered business with a valid business license
• Must be the founder of the business or have had a significant impact on the company if acquired. He/she must be responsible for the day-to-day management and the financial bottom line of the company.
The mentees will be selected through an open call application over a given duration. Upon submission, EDC and the US Embassy will screen the applications to ensure completion and that the mentee has demonstrated a clear need to be enrolled in the program.
Based on the mentees needs and the mentor’s area of expertise, EDC and the U.S. Embassy will matchmake the mentors with the mentees. The number of mentees per mentor will depend on the number of screened mentee applications that are received and the capacity of the mentor. During the application process, the mentee will have to demonstrate the exact need for a mentor and the areas of intervention. This will allow the mentor to understand the mentees need in order for the mentorship to be effective, tangible, and measurable after the 7-month mentorship period. Once the matchmaking is complete, it is up to the mentor and mentee to devise a meeting schedule over the 7-month duration agreed upon by both parties.
It is important to all parties involved that a tangible output and change be produced at the end of the mentorship program. For this reason, at the beginning of the mentorship program, all mentees will complete a baseline form that provides EDC, the U.S. Embassy, and the mentors a snap shot of the current state of their business. At the end of the 7-month mentorship period, the mentees will complete the same baseline form that will help the abovementioned parties assess the change/improvement of the business over time.
Based on this information, EDC and the U.S. Embassy will plan to recognize the most improved businesses at the conclusion of the 7-month program during the annual Global Entrepreneurship Week ceremony. More information about the ceremony will be provided shortly.