Grupo Guayacán, Inc. (GGI) announced Wednesday the start of their annual call for applications for the 9th edition of the Guayacán Venture Accelerator (GVA), an entrepreneurial education and development program for established companies seeking new growth opportunities.
The GVA was first launched in 2010 and is one of GGI’s cornerstone entrepreneurship programs, and the only program in Puerto Rico designed to boost the growth of established companies with at least three years of operation. The program will take place from August to December 2017.
Program applicants must demonstrate organizational capacity and commitment to design and implement an aggressive growth plan that may include increasing local market share, entry to new international markets, and the development of new products or services.
The program provides a rigorous curriculum of advanced education offered by a group of distinguished academics, professionals, executives, and local and international investors.
“The GVA is a unique program that allows participating companies to profoundly analyze their business model with the goal of developing new growth plans in order to scale their local operations, and enter new international markets,” said Laura Cantero, executive director of Grupo Guayacán.
“We’re incredibly satisfied with the achievements of our program alumni and we invite business owners looking for new growth opportunities to accept the challenge and apply to the GVA,” she said.
In previous years, the program has demonstrated significant success with 75 percent and 63 percent of its alumni reporting increased headcount and sales revenues, respectively. On average, GVA companies grow their sales by at least 30 percent after participating in the program.
In total, the 68 program graduates represent more than 5,000 jobs. Notable alumni include Rock Solid technologies, Wovenware, Fuller Group, Caribbean Produce, Atención Atención, and Máximo Solar, among others.
“The GVA helped us look beyond our current business, identifying and developing competitive advantages that will allow us to continue distinguishing our offerings and be able to scale our services to new markets,” said Antonio Ortiz, CEO of Connect Road Assist and graduate of GVA 2016.
One of the GVA’s most unique aspects is that it allows company owners or presidents to participate alongside up to two members of their executive team, increasing the likelihood of successful implementation of their growth plans and strengthening the management team.
This year’s edition of the GVA will offer 11 educational workshops, including a new session on Strategic Planning by Germán Uribe, President of Plaza Outsource Solutions. Participants will also have access to mentors who will support them as they move towards implementation of their new plans.
Lastly, GVA companies will benefit from a series of coaching sessions where a group of distinguished entrepreneurs, investors, and professionals will offer their perspectives and advice.
These sessions also prepare the participants for the Guayacán Demo Day, where companies that are interested in raising capital will have the opportunity to present their growth plans in front of a panel of local and international investors.
In the coming weeks, GGI will offer an exclusive event for companies interested in the GVA, with a presentation by Robert “Bob” Dávila, who has been a GVA Instructor since the program’s launch and is a former Executive Director of GGI.
The event will be held Mar. 16 and will offer participants the opportunity to learn more about the program and hear from one of its cornerstone speakers. The keynote presentation’s topic will be “Pivoting Towards Success: Achieving Breakout Growth Through Disruptive Innovation and Lean Customer Development.”
For more details and to confirm attendance, those interested can contact Gabriela Álvarez (firstname.lastname@example.org). Companies interested in participating in the GVA must complete an online application on or before April 28. To access the application, visit the following link.