Start-up Georgia: 726 new business ideas compete for funding

Business experts from Silicon Valley in the US will come to Georgia on August 22 to assess the Georgian start-up ideas. Photo by Teck Park Georgia., 05 Aug 2016 - 16:07, Tbilisi,Georgia

Hundreds of Georgia’s young, creative minds have applied to a new program that offers funds and support to turn their new business idea into reality.

Today Georgia’s Economy Minister Dimitry Kumsishvili summed up the state project Start-up Georgia, which attracted 726 applications of new business ideas. Of this 580 proposals were submitted as innovative ideas while 146 were regarded as high technology businesses.

Since the scheme launched two months ago, young and creative minds from all over the country were invited to describe their business ideas and submit an application to the Start-up Georgia project.

The scheme promised great financial and theoretical support for entrepreneurs to help bring their business proposals to life.

The Government established an initial fund of 11 million GEL (about $5 million/€4.33 million*) that will be shared between chosen business projects, however the amount of funds available is set to increase to 35 million GEL (about $15 million/€13.77 million*).

We started Start-up Georgia to change Georgia for the better, to create new opportunities and develop entrepreneurial spirit in the country,” said Kumsishvili.

Successful businesses would foster entrepreneurial spirit in the country, bring money into the industry and support development of the economy, he said.

Today Georgia's Economy Minister Dimitry Kumsishvili presented the latest results of the Start-up Georgia project. Photo by Georgia's Ministry of Economy.

The majority of business applications (262 new business ideas) were submitted from people in Georgia’s capital Tbilisi.

Submissions also came from the following regions:

  • Imereti - 48 applications;
  • Kakheti - 44;
  • Adjara - 37;
  • Mtskheta-Mtianeti - 33.

Among the applicants were 56 Georgians who currently lived outside Georgia’s territorial border.

The process to select the final applicants who would receive funding has already begun, said the Economy Minister. He said this process would be completed by the end of August and by September the scheme will begin financing new business ideas.

The selection will be made in two stages. In particular, the first stage will be a general review of applications and the second stage will be review of the merits of the business – assessment of risks, business sustainability, investment attractiveness, team skills and more,” said Kumsishvili.

Experts from successful businesses in Silicon Valley, United States will come to Georgia on August 22 to help local exports select the best business ideas.