SUMMARY: The promotion of entrepreneurship is at the forefront of the USG’s engagement agenda and foreign policy priorities. One of the most visible symbols of this important work is the annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES), an annual gathering that brings together investors and entrepreneurs at all stages of business development. This year’s GES takes place June 22-24 in the heart of Silicon Valley, home to some of the world’s leading technology firms, start-ups, and investors. The first day of the three-day summit will provide an opportunity for a select group of youth and women entrepreneurs to connect with investors and funders, while the remaining two days will widen the lens to focus on all facets of entrepreneurship. Roughly 1,000-1,200 total delegates are anticipated, the majority of whom are expected to be entrepreneurs. While investors, speakers, and sponsors will round out the attendance, we are exploring opportunities to engage other interested parties through digital platforms. END SUMMARY
- Ideal entrepreneur candidates will have well-developed business plans and strategies, and will benefit from the professional mentoring available in Silicon Valley. We also seek broad participation from underrepresented minorities from respective host countries.
- EVENT DETAILS: The 7th annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) will be held in Silicon Valley (the San Francisco Bay Area, California) on June 22-24, 2016. This strategic location highlights the important role that entrepreneurship plays in the U.S. economy, and also provides a unique platform to connect global entrepreneurs with prominent investors and mentors. GES 2016 will showcase the USG’s commitment to the promotion of entrepreneurship, shine a spotlight on entrepreneurs from around the globe, expand access to funders and mentors, facilitate private sector engagement with other regions of the world, and support economic growth and development. The agenda will include a diverse array of panels, plenaries, workshops, conversations, and myriad opportunities for mentoring and networking. Three types of delegates will participate in the GES: Entrepreneurs (550 slots); a select group of Entrepreneurs chosen to participate in an additional Youth and Women event on June 22 (150 slots); and Investors (300 slots).
- For most of the delegates, the GES is a 2-day Summit on June 23-24 with a pre-Summit Reception for all delegates on the evening of June 22nd. In addition to the pre-Summit Reception, the first day (June 22) of the three-day event will include a special Youth and Women program focused on emerging youth and women entrepreneurs selected from the larger entrepreneur pool. Investors will be invited to attend the Youth and Women program on June 22 as well. The second and third day of the Summit will consist of interactive sessions, keynotes, and opportunities for investors and all entrepreneurs to share ideas and connect.
- FUNDING: GES will be funded from both public and private sector resources. Four nights of lodging costs will be paid for all 700 entrepreneurs invited to participate in GES. Travel costs and lodging will be provided for the 150 entrepreneurs from within the 700 who are selected for the first day’s Youth and Women program. Additional travel funding is not guaranteed.
- SELECTION PROCESS: All delegates must apply via the online application. The online application for GES 2016 Entrepreneur participants will go live on February 4, 2016, at www.GES2016.org, and will close on February 15. The application is designed to encourage potential participants to articulate their enterprise’s unique contributions, challenges, and opportunities. It also will prepare them to actively engage with investors and other entrepreneurs (e.g. by requesting a pitch slide deck.) Applicants may save and return to the application at a later date to complete, but it must be submitted by the February 15 deadline. All entrepreneur delegates, including for the Youth and Women event, will be selected from the same applicant pool. The online application form for Investor delegates will be available beginning February 16, 2016, at the same website,www.GES2016.org.
- Entrepreneur applications will undergo a multi-step review process. Selected participants will receive a formal invitation and can begin to organize necessary visas and make travel arrangements. We will notify applicants who are not chosen no later than May 2.