1871, STATE OF ILLINOIS, ISTC, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE, AND CRDF GLOBAL ANNOUNCE PARTNERSHIP FOR GIST INITIATIVE
1871, STATE OF
ILLINOIS, ISTC, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE, AND CRDF GLOBAL ANNOUNCE
PARTNERSHIP FOR GIST INITIATIVE
Entrepreneurship Journey will bring together 12 international startups for
acceleration programs in Chicago and Washington D.C.
Chicago, IL and Washington, D.C.
(May 28, 2014)— 1871 joined the state of Illinois, the Illinois Science
and Technology Coalition, CRDF Global and the U.S. Department of State
today to announce a partnership that will bring the Global Innovation
through Science and Technology (GIST) Initiative to Chicago and Washington
D.C. Twelve competitively selected startups based in Indonesia, Jordan,
Kenya, Malaysia, Pakistan, Tunisia and Uganda will participate in the
Entrepreneurship Journey that introduces international science and technology
entrepreneurs to American innovation ecosystems and accelerates the
development of their early stage companies.
“Freedom of opportunity is humanity’s
most powerful motivator,” said Secretary of State John Kerry. “This
is true for all people, regardless of geography or gender, regardless of
race or religion. And, entrepreneurship is about how you build a
society that values competition and compassion at the same time. The
Obama Administration is really inspired by the kind of work that the GIST
Journey participants here are doing, and that’s why we are going to
continue promoting entrepreneurship around the world.”
“The state of Illinois was an early
and proud investor in 1871, and that support continues to pay dividends for
our economy,” Illinois Governor Pat Quinn said. “This innovative initiative
will improve the links between Illinois’ businesses and international
entrepreneurs who are looking at expanding into the North American
Participants in the GIST
Entrepreneurship Journey will receive leadership and practical training, as
well as one-on-one mentorship tailored to their startups. The entrepreneurs
will also have opportunities in Chicago and Washington D.C. to engage with
the media, industry leaders, potential partners and investors.
“1871’s work with the GIST
Initiative provides an important platform for international collaboration
in the digital community,” said 1871 CEO Howard A. Tullman. “As a leading
hub for technology and innovation, 1871 is uniquely equipped to provide
international entrepreneurs with the education and experiences that help
companies succeed in an inherently global industry.”
“One of the goals of the GIST Entrepreneurship
Journey is to provide the tools necessary for the 12 selected entrepreneurs
to become leaders in their community and strengthen the startup ecosystem
in their countries. Our partnership with 1871 will achieve that,” said
Natalia Pipia, Associate Director, Entrepreneurship and Innovation, CRDF
Representatives of the twelve
startups will arrive in Chicago on Sunday, June 8, and begin their program
with three days of mentorship, scheduled work time, and training sessions
that cover leadership, marketing, and doing business in the United States.
The entrepreneurs will then meet with executives of tech companies before
participating in the Chicago GIST
Demo Day where they will pitch their product to a panel of judges.
Following the Demo Day,
participants will meet with potential customers and funders, engage with
mentors, and participate in further training sessions before departing
Chicago. While in Washington D.C., entrepreneurs will give interviews, meet
with potential customers and funders, engage directly with the U.S.
Department of State, and showcase their products at the D.C. GIST Demo Day. This
year’s GIST Entrepreneurship Journey marks the first occasion that the
program has traveled to a location other than Silicon Valley.
About CRDF Global CRDF
Global is an independent nonprofit organization that promotes
international scientific and technical collaboration through grants,
technical resources, training and services. CRDF Global is based in
Arlington, Virginia with offices in Moscow, Russia; Kyiv,
Ukraine; Almaty, Kazakhstan; and Amman, Jordan.
About 1871 1871
is an entrepreneurial hub for digital startups. Located in The Merchandise
Mart, the 50,000-square-foot facility provides Chicago startups with
programming, access to mentors, educational resources, potential investors
and a community of like-minded entrepreneurs that help them on their path
to building successful businesses. 1871 is the flagship project
of the CEC.
The Illinois Science and Technology Coalition is a member-driven nonprofit
entity that drives public-private partnerships between industry, research
universities, federal labs and government to foster innovation and economic
About GIST The
GIST Initiative builds entrepreneurial ecosystems in over 54 countries in
the Middle East, Central & South East Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, by
identifying, coaching and funding promising entrepreneurs through its
competitions, start-up acceleration services, online social media platform,
and interactive mentorship programs. The GIST Initiative is a partnership
led by the U.S. Department of State and CRDF Global.