The U.S. Embassy Addis Ababa and The Entrepreneurship Development Center (EDC) are pleased to announce the launch earlier this month of a Mentorship Program to help further foster entrepreneurship development in Ethiopia. The program connects successful Ethiopian aspiring entrepreneurs with experienced mentors. These mentors, entrepreneurs themselves, provide coaching and technical assistance on specific problems identified by their mentees, in order to help them grow their business and become competitive in the marketplace.

A total of fourteen companies seeking technical assistance were selected for the program on a competitive basis. The companies come from a variety of sectors including manufacturing, agro processing, construction, and service. Six seasoned entrepreneurs volunteered their valuable time to serve as mentors. Based on the identified needs of the mentees and their own area of interest, the mentors each selected one or more companies to support.

Over the next six months, the entrepreneurs and mentors will work together, identifying specific areas for improvement and establishing targets to measure progress.

Mentors and mentees will be honored during Global Entrepreneurship Week 2017 (November 13-19, 2017), where the entrepreneur demonstrating the most improvement will receive special recognition.

Entrepreneurs create jobs and help fuel economic grown around the world. They embody and foster a culture of self-sufficiency, initiative and innovation. Countries with strong entrepreneurs tend to be strong trading partners. For these reasons, the United States has long fostered the growth and development of entrepreneurship around the globe. Through initiatives like this mentorship program and the annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit, U.S. Embassies around the world seek to encourage and recognize young entrepreneurs.

EDC is a quasi-government entity aims to enhance the skills and competencies of entrepreneurs through training and business development support in order for the businesses to be profitable, competitive and sustainable (edcethiopia.org).