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Momentum Project selects its 10 winning social entrepreneur schemes for 2012
- The Scientific Committee: Francisco Esteve, BBVA’s director of Corporate Investment Banking; Javier Garilleti, managing director of the PwC Foundation; Antoni Ballabriga, BBVA’s director of Corporate Responsibility and Reputation; Alfred Vernis, ESADE's director of University Programs; Sabina Lobato, director of Employment, Training and Projects at the ONCE Foundation; and Carl Muñana, president of Ashoka Spain.
- Anexo 1 - Los 10 emprendimientos seleccionados
- The social entrepreneurs selected for Momentum Project present their business development plans to potential investors at the "Social Investment Day"
- The ¤3 million BBVA-led investment vehicle funds seven projects in the first edition of the Momentum Project
- Seven Momentum Project entrepreneurs will receive funding for their growth plans
- Representatives of the chosen projects will begin a program which includes specialized training from the ESADE business school, guidance from BBVA executives and companies associated with the project and customized training on how to present their projects to potential investors at the Social Investment Day
- The Scientific Committee, made up of specialists in the social entrepreneurship field and in project risk and scalability, last week chose the 10 winning projects, out of 44 finalists that met all Momentum Project requirements, based on their social impact and potential for expansion and success in the immediate future
- Thanks to Momentum Social Investment, an investment vehicle designed by BBVA, the first round of the Momentum Project provided financing of up to ¤3 million to seven social initiatives
The Momentum Project’s Scientific Committee has chosen the 10 most promising social entrepreneurship initiatives in the second annual round of the project, rewarding the ventures that best met the goals of the program created by BBVA and ESADE in conjunction with PwC: to provide support for the highest-potential social entrepreneurship initiatives in order to ensure their success, growth and scalability in terms of the impact of their economic and social activities. The Scientific Committee’s jury assessed matters relating to the type of venture, its social impact, risk ratios and capacity for innovation and leadership, among other factors.
During a presentation announcing the selected projects, Antoni Ballabriga, BBVA’s director of Corporate Responsibility and Reputation, noted that "Momentum Project represents a fantastic opportunity for the bank to learn from social entrepreneurship and adopt the conviction that it is possible to tackle social problems using market-based, financially sustainable solutions. For BBVA’s mentors, it has been a true values-based leadership training program." According to Alfred Vernis, ESADE’s director of University Programs, "Momentum Project is a pioneering initiative in Spain, both because it highlights the great work these social companies are doing and because it brings together entrepreneurs, students and corporate executives for the shared purpose of promoting projects with a wide-ranging social impact. We are very pleased to host all of them in our ESADE classrooms and to accompany them as they expand”.
Meanwhile, according to PwC Foundation Managing Director Javier Garilleti, "the linchpin of Momentum Project lies in all of the different stakeholders’ willingness to work together to craft a solution that helps social entrepreneurs develop their ideas to their full potential, creating a conducive, but tremendously demanding, framework for action".
Starting on June 6, representatives of the 10 winning social entrepreneurship projects will have access to specialized training at ESADE's Barcelona campus, studying under some of the business school's best professors, who are experts in strategies for growth, entrepreneurship, venture capital, marketing and innovation.
During the training sessions, which this year will last for two weeks (one in June and another in July), working groups will be formed to guide each project's members in the development, funding and execution of a business development plan. Additionally, workshops will be held and participants will share information on successful case studies and networking. Two individuals from each of the chosen social entrepreneurship ventures will participate in this intensive training course. They will thus begin to establish a significant network among themselves which will enable them to learn a great deal from one another, particularly as they share the challenges facing their own organizations.
The entrepreneurs will share classrooms with selected ESADE MBA students, who will help to develop a strategic plan for each venture, and with executives of BBVA and some of the leading Spanish corporations that have committed to Momentum Project, all of whom will act as mentors and participate in the final stage of the training program.
After the ESADE training phase is completed, working teams will continue to prepare a Development Plan over the next 10 weeks. They will meet in Madrid in October to prepare presentations of their business development plans to potential funders at the Social Investment Day, to be held at BBVA’s La Moraleja Campus. BBVA estimates that the total value of the comprehensive training received by the 10 chosen projects – whose participants will include BBVA executives serving as mentors alongside PwC consultants – will equate to a master’s degree from ESADE valued at some ¤50,000.
The Scientific Committee which selected the projects consists of Maite Arango, vice president of the VIPS Group; Antoni Ballabriga, BBVA’s director of Corporate Responsibility and Reputation; Alberto Calvo, BBVA’s director of Wealth Management; Ignasi Carreras, director of ESADE's Institute of Social Innovation; Francisco Esteve, BBVA’s director of Corporate Investment Banking; Javier Garilleti, managing director of the PwC Foundation; Sabina Lobato, director of Employment, Training and Projects at the ONCE Foundation; Javier Maceira, a PwC partner; Carl Muñana, president of Ashoka Spain; Marcell Planellas, professor at the ESADE Entrepreneurship Institute; Alfred Vernis, ESADE's director of University Programs; and Esperanza Vigueras, director of the BBVA Risk Division’s Planning, Monitoring and Reporting department. The committee members analyzed and chose the 10 entrepreneurship ventures that best fit the judging criteria published in the contest announcement.
The Committee looked for positive aspects such as a transparent organization committed to entrepreneurship, a proven societal impact in resolving social problems, active participation in the market economy, viable and sustainable risk ratios over time, a noteworthy capacity for innovation and leadership and scalability potential, among other qualities.
The 97 candidate entries submitted in the second round of Momentum Project hailed from 13 of Spain’s autonomous communities, and the 10 winners represent five of them: Cantabria, Catalonia, Galicia, Madrid and the Basque Country. In terms of the winners’ areas of action, the landscape is highly varied, with a slight predominance of initiatives designed to encourage underprivileged groups to join the workforce.
Overview of the 2011 Momentum Project
Seven of the 10 projects selected in the first edition of Momentum Project received a total of nearly ¤3 million in funding thanks to an investment vehicle designed by BBVA.
Catering Solidario, DAU, Gran Vallés, Hornos Lamastelle, Moltacte, Roba Amiga and Teixidors now have access to soft loans at interest rates of between 2% and 8%, depending on their length. The companies will also enjoy a grace period for repayment of principal of between two and four years, and a return premium for the vehicle in the event of a shareholder liquidity event among the companies in which the funds are invested.
"At BBVA we believe it is very important to offer our experience in how to invest in the best projects from a financial and social point of view," said Francisco Esteve, BBVA’s director of Corporate Investment Banking. In addition, we also hope to be able to contribute our know-how in managing subsidiaries as a means of backing social entrepreneurs as they grow their projects. All of these efforts are geared toward a common goal of successfully launching one of the most innovative investment vehicles in the emerging field of high-impact investment in Spain."
The 10 winning entrepreneurship projects
- Ampros – Depersonas was founded in Santander in 2010 with the goal of creating jobs in the sustainable food business for people with physical and mental disabilities. The venture currently employs eight disabled people at a catering service specializing in organic and fair trade products. Its short-term plans include an organic farm to supply the project with produce and a venture into organic livestock farming and yoghurt production.
- Ajudes Técniques Bach (ATBach) was founded in San Cugat (Barcelona) in 2005 to market innovative products designed for physically disabled people, as a means of addressing disabled people’s everyday problems (wheelchairs, bicycles and accessories) and improving their quality of life. Additionally, it offers quality jobs to people with physical disabilities. ATBach is a leader in its field in Spain, and its expansion plans include international expansion and widening its range of products.
- Associació Joia – Apunts, a special job center created in 1984 for the purpose of generating opportunities for people with mental illness to join the workforce. The center offers printing, database management, handling and distribution services in the form of innovative products customized for each customer's needs. As a complimentary activity, it offers quality jobs to people with mental illnesses: such individuals account for 52 of the 66 workers currently on the payroll.
- Atentis is a Madrid-based company which since 2008 has offered large-format digital printing products and personalized gifts for companies, such as the sale of paintings produced by people with Down syndrome. What’s more, it has expanded its range of services with CSR projects and educational workshops for companies and foundations that work with disabled people. Its goal is to bring disabled people into the job market through a combination of talent and new technologies.
- Montaraz has been at work on biomass-based energy generation since 1990. This Madrid-based social entrepreneurship venture’s impact is both social and environmental: generation of clean energy (reducing CO2 emissions), forest clean-up (lessening the risk of forest fires) and fostering job creation in rural areas. It also markets and distributes high-quality wood chips and pellets in rural areas and offers research and client advisory services.
- Parallel 40 – Planeta Med was founded in 1996 for the purpose of creating an environment for promoting the production and distribution of documentaries of social interest. This Barcelona-based company aims to enrich society through documentary film by creating a supply for untapped markets, providing opportunities and training to young people and organizing festivals. With more than 100 documentaries produced so far, its remaining challenges include developing new circuits for showings and festivals and expanding on the Internet.
- Rede Galega de Kioscos was founded in La Coruña in 2005 and currently employs 118 disabled workers. It aims to bring disabled people into the job market by distributing products at proprietary (kiosks) and third-party points of sale. It has begun to introduce a brand and proprietary product line and to develop a web-based sales platform. Another goal is to achieve a level of professionalization that will enable it to improve its employees‘ working conditions and training.
- Rus in Urbe – Huerta de Montecarmelo launched in Madrid in 2011 to enable people with intellectual disabilities to cultivate urban gardens. The venture now has 147 gardens, all of them fully occupied. In addition to its main focus, the venture also contributes to environmental quality by salvaging degraded land on the outskirts of cities. Its development plans call for opening two new centers in Madrid.
- TEB Verd – Bolet Ben Fet was founded in Barcelona in 2009 to produce and market exotic mushrooms. Its social impact is multifaceted: it offers stable employment to people with intellectual disabilities and encourages responsible use of organic and local products based on an environmentally sustainable farm model. Its managers currently aim to maximize the farm's production capacity, forge alliances with other centers and diversify its product range.
- Txita Txirrindak was founded in 2006 in San Sebastián to create a sustainable merchandise delivery system adapted to the urban environment, innovating both in the mode of transportation (vehicles-tricycles) and the operating model to cut transportation costs, improve service and air quality in cities. Txita Txirrindak is also the exclusive distributor of the tricycles, offers a bike-taxi service in the summer months and is trying to replicate its business model in other cities. In 2011 alone, its activities prevented 13 tons of CO2 emissions.
For more information and photographs: http://momentum-project.org/