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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Global Entrepreneurship Programs


In addition to supporting and promoting GEP Partner Programs, GEP also works with partners to create new programs.

Entrepreneurship Delegations

Entrepreneurship delegations between the United States and GEP host countries are composed of 8-12 American investors, as well as American entrepreneurs who may serve as role models and mentors to local entrepreneurs.

The primary goals of the entrepreneurship delegations are to:

  • Facilitate an introduction between leading entrepreneurs in country and U.S. investors interested in opportunities in key emerging markets.
  • Provide an opportunity for the exchange of information and ideas, as well as networking, between those interested in promoting scalable growth companies in the United States and abroad.
  • Bolster the development of entrepreneurship initiatives in emerging markets, including the GEP in host countries.

Read about our delegation to Portugal.

Angel Networks

A nation’s economy grows when new, innovative companies get support from “angel investors” – high net worth people who make equity investments in early-stage small businesses and often serve as “venture mentors” to the entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs require capital to start, run, and expand their enterprises. One of the most important sources of seed capital in the United States and other developed economies has been the rapid rise of angel investors and networks. Over 90% of U.S. startups receive Angel funding versus 7% who ever receive traditional venture capital investment.

Women’s Entrepreneurship

Collaborating with other State Department offices and by supporting several partners, we engage in programs like the African Women’s Entrepreneurship Program (AWEP). Launched in July 2010, AWEP is an outreach, education, and engagement initiative that targets African women entrepreneurs to promote business growth, increase trade both regionally and to U.S. markets through the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), create better business environments, and empower African women entrepreneurs to become voices of change in their communities. Partners for 2013-2014 include the African Diaspora Marketplace, Cheri Blair Foundation for Women, Intel Corporation, International Finance Corporation, Japan International Cooperation Agency, USAID, Vital Voices Global Partnership, and WEConnect.

Another initiative GEP is involved with is the Pathways Access Initiative, where we support U.S. corporations seeking supplier diversity in Latin America by certifying women-owned businesses (WOBs) qualified to supply these companies with both goods for sale, as well as products and services needed in the operation of their businesses. Through an implementer, this program will identify relevant networks of women-owned businesses that have the potential to be certified and thus qualify to do business with these major multi-nationals. This will bring a stronger trade component to the current Pathways to Prosperity program.

Annual Global Entrepreneurship Summits

The Summits bring together hundreds of entrepreneurs, investors, mentoring groups, academics, and policy makers from all over the world, to discuss topics from fostering broad-based economic growth and facilitating an entrepreneurial business climate, to supporting growth of high potential start-ups and creating jobs for millions of youth and others globally.

Four nations have already hosted Summits: Indonesia (2011), Turkey (2011), United Arab Emirates (2012), and Malaysia (2013). Our next Global Entrepreneurship Summit will happen in Morocco in the fall of this year.


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