by Wadsam | October 19, 2017 6:03 pm
The first group of young female entrepreneurs graduate from Startup Valley, Afghanistan’s first private business incubator.
Operated by AGHAEZ Professional Services and supported by USAID: Promote Women in the Economy (WIE), Startup Valley encourages the entrepreneurial mindset in youth, especially female university graduates.
Out of over 150 applications, and 30 selected candidates, these 17 young women completed the incubation program and are now taking their business concepts to market.
“Young entrepreneurs are the future of the country and at the forefront of economic development and sustainability in Afghanistan. We congratulate the hard work and entrepreneurial vision of these young women”, said Susan DeCamp, Director of USAID’s Gender Office.
Ten of the new companies are already registered, have a presence in Kabul, and are generating income; the others are in the process of incorporating. The new business concepts include mobile applications, a health center for women, landscaping services, and a seeding and agriculture venture, to name a few. Startup Valley and WIE will provide six months follow up support that will include advisory services, networking, assistance in procuring office space, and relevant technical assistance.
A second group of 26 female entrepreneurs are already lined up to enter the second chapter of Startup Valley. Over the five month course of their incubation period, these startups will take part in workshop sessions, receive coaching and mentoring, and take part in networking and learning opportunities with entrepreneurs who have already navigated the startup and launch process. The incubatees will validate their ideas, develop business models, conduct market research, develop viable products, and finally launch their startups.
“We believe that by nurturing a startup ecosystem in Afghanistan, we will contribute to the economic growth of the country by helping to reduce unemployment as more startup companies translates to jobs creation,” said Ahmad Fahim Didar, Executive Director of AGHAEZ Professional Services.
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