BBVA Momentum, BBVA’s social entrepreneurship support program, announced the final list of companies that will participate in the 2019 program. The enthusiasm and ambition to surpass previous years’ numbers prevailed during the selection phase, as the final participant numbers attest.
The response to the call for applicants exceeded all expectations with 954 applications received from entrepreneurs interested in taking part in BBVA Momentum 2019; this figure represents a 13 percent rise compared to 2018. “These figures demonstrate how BBVA Momentum continues to outdo itself year after year. We are more than satisfied with our participation numbers and the warm reception of the entrepreneurs who have placed their trust in the program’s training opportunities to further their ability to make a significant social and/or environmental impact,” Lidia del Pozo, BBVA head of community programs commented.
The initial goal defined by BBVA Momentum 2019 was to reach 160 social business finalists, but after an arduous selection process, the program teams in the respective participating countries (Colombia, the United States, Mexico, and Turkey) exceeded the proposed number, choosing 169 companies: 89 for the global program and 80 for the local Mexican program. The program delivers both training and business acceleration. “We have certainly challenged ourselves. Three years ago, what had started off as a project with ten entrepreneurs, grew to 100 as we stretched to meet the challenge we had set for ourselves,” explained Irma Acosta, head of corporate responsibility and reputation at BBVA Mexico: “We are proud to show how these entrepreneurs – with such successful businesses – have secured financing.”
Global challenges, local solutions
Each local version of the program is different with a varying number of participants. This year, the program in Colombia will contribute to the business acceleration of 40 companies; in the United States, to 19 companies; in Mexico, 100 (20 in the global program, and 80 in the local program); and 10 in Turkey. This group of companies comprise a varied mosaic that perfectly reflects the social and environmental issues prevalent in our global society.
This year, the top ranked activity category consists of ventures that encompass energy, utilities, and the environment, representing 33% percent of the participating companies; this activity is followed by education (28%) and other industries (24%). In regard to the social problems to be addressed, the entrepreneurial finalists mainly focus on the challenges posed by the environment and rural areas (60% percent), education (37%) and diversity (33%).
A phase of new challenges and changes is beginning for the 169 participating companies. BBVA Momentum 2019 starts from June 11 to 12 in Colombia, June 17 to 19 in USA, June 27 to 28 in Mexico and June 27 in Turkey. The training program 'online' will begin on July 3 with the session 'The role of technology and innovation'. This program is exclusively created by Headspring, an initiative originating from the partnership between the Instituto de Empresa business school and the British media company, Financial Times. The training runs over 18 weeks and combines online sessions with face-to-face classes, totaling 60 hours of learning.
Meanwhile, participating entrepreneurs will benefit from the support of the consummate professionals at BBVA, both as mentors and specialists, who will help them take the first step in scaling up their business model: the growth plan. The program will also assume responsibility for promoting networking between the participants; giving the participants visibility with various communication activities (events, interviews, etc); and providing opportunities where they can explore securing the financing they need, according to the terms and conditions as defined by the program in each participating country.
To date, BBVA Momentum has supported 515 companies, with the collaboration of more than 300 BBVA mentors and specialists. This year’s round represents a leap in the scale of the program, with 169 new members joining the entrepreneurial ecosystem. The most ambitious year in the history of the program continues to break records.