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Erasmus for young Entrepreneur : a great opportunity for 3 200 Businesses !

The Erasmus for Young Entrepreneur Programme is a programme designed to support mobility periods abroad for young entrepreneurs, with a view to improving their skills and fostering the cross-border transfer of knowledge between the SMEs as well as gain valuable skills and experience in a business in another country participating in the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme (CIP).
Since 2009, this programme has already benefits for 1 600 exchanges and help create or expanded 3 200 businesses.

More than 1600 exchanges have so far been organised under the Erasmus for Young entrepreneurs programme and some 3200 businesses have been created or expanded (including numerous joint ventures and new cross border relations). Since 2009, funded by the European Commission, Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs enables new entrepreneurs – be they “would-be” entrepreneurs armed with a coherent business plan or entrepreneurs who started their own business in the last three years – to gain valuable skills and experience in a business in another country participating in the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme (CIP). European Commission Vice President Antonio Tajani will congratulate tomorrow in Milan new entrepreneurs who recently set up their own company. They have opened various types of company, including an enterprise company producing educational game software and promoting tourism using mobile technologies, a strategic consulting firm for technology focused companies, and a jewellery technology network.

Under the ‘Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs’ programme, an entrepreneur intending to start a company or having just started one, can get first-hand, practical coaching from an experienced entrepreneur from another country, by working alongside him or her for one to six months. New entrepreneurs receive a grant from the European Union for their stay abroad. Through this experience, they can acquire the skills needed to successfully start and run a small business, or bring some fresh ideas into their company. Host entrepreneurs also benefit significantly from the exchange. They can make use of the particular knowledge the young entrepreneur brings, profit from the entrepreneur’s energy and talent, and last but not least get the opportunity to explore new markets abroad.

94% of participating new entrepreneurs and 85% of host entrepreneurs report that the programme has helped them to set up or extend development their business. 84% of host entrepreneurs would happily welcome another young entrepreneur. Some have received up to four so far! Many exchanges result in long-term cooperation between the two entrepreneurs, as well as in the internationalisation of their businesses. Also, the programme does not only considerably contribute to the creation of new businesses, but makes them more robust, competitive and sustainable. New businesses, new ideas, and stronger companies: this means less unemployment.


‘Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs’ is financed by the European Commission and operates across countries participating in CIP with the help of nearly 200 business support organisations (intermediary organisations), such as Chambers of Commerce, business support organisations or start-up centres.

This programme started in 2009 as a pilot project, but became soon part of the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme (CIP), which provided it with a permanent footing.


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