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Social Capitalists: Endeavor Global

43 entrepreneurs who are changing the world
2007 Social Capitalist Winner

Endeavor Global

New York, NY
Year founded: 1997
Executive director: Linda Rottenberg


Endeavor transforms emerging-market economies by identifying and supporting high-impact entrepreneurs. High-impact entrepreneurs have the biggest ideas and the most ambitious plans. They have the potential to create thriving companies that employ hundreds—even thousands—of people and generate millions of dollars in wages and revenues. And they have the power to inspire countless others.


Among the root causes of poverty in many parts of the world are lack of jobs and lack of social mobility. Endeavor addresses these causes by supporting high-impact entrepreneurs who contribute to private sector development in emerging markets. High-impact entrepreneurship creates jobs, generates wealth, and contributes to the economic and social growth of emerging-market countries.

With offices in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, South Africa, Turkey and Uruguay—and a bold plan for expansion into Asia, Africa and the Middle East—Endeavor has applied an award-winning “venture catalyst” model to address the problem of global development by turning promising emerging-market entrepreneurs into creators of added-value jobs and opportunity.


Endeavor’s rigorous Search & Selection program scours emerging markets for innovative, high-growth entrepreneurs—the ones poised to create the most jobs and wealth. Through a series of customized services and access to a world-class global network, we enable these entrepreneurs to reach their high-impact potential. Our model works to overturn barriers to new venture creation—building permanent cultural and institutional support for entrepreneurship in emerging markets. We connect the most promising entrepreneurs to a network of successful business people and investors with the resources and skills to help take their business ideas to scale. The result: successful high-impact entrepreneurs who inspire new generations of entrepreneurs to innovate and create jobs.


As of October 2006, Endeavor has supported more than 250 entrepreneurs from over 150 companies. Endeavor Entrepreneurs have created more than 45,000 new jobs, paying on average ten times the national minimum wage, and generated approximately $2 billion in new revenue. Today, 96% of Endeavor Entrepreneurs’ companies are still operating in countries where entrepreneurial ventures typically close within 42 months. Most importantly, Endeavor Entrepreneurs have become role models, inspiring others in their communities to start businesses. This is Endeavor’s “multiplier effect,” which spurs economic and cultural transformation.

Endeavor is committed to expanding our model into Asia, Africa, and the Middle East with the goal of taking entrepreneurship beyond subsistence to jumpstart private-sector development in emerging-market countries. By supporting local entrepreneurs to create jobs and accelerate the spread of innovations that will improve the quality of life in the developing world, Endeavor helps instill confidence in emerging-market countries normally hampered by doubt and helps narrow the gap between rich and poor.

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