There are more than 40 entrepreneurs who have dared to boost their businesses with the StartUp Popular program, which offers participants financing, coaching and networking activities.
Those looking to participate in the third edition have until May 31 to submit their proposals, Banco Popular executives said Monday, adding there is $1.6 million available to winning applications
StartUp Popular was designed to support entrepreneurship. To qualify, the business must be generating sales and be in operation for a maximum of two years.
The initiative aims to support the entrepreneur in several facets, not only in the loan disbursement or credit line up to $50,000, but by guiding it with an extensive educational, support and networking program. It also incorporates a wide variety of services and benefits, once the proposal is approved, the bank said.
On average, participating businesses have increased their sales by about 30 percent, program organizers said, attributing it to the investment they were able to make in their business to grow, either in equipment purchases, improvements to the premises, or investment in marketing, among many other types of investment.
In addition, businesses have received two hours of business coaching per month in topics such as human resources, marketing, business administration, legal, operations, among others, which has helped them maximize their investment, bank officials further noted.
Another element of the program is the networking activities, such as the one held in April, which give participants the opportunity to share their experiences and identify new business opportunities.
This event also served to integrate entrepreneurs that participated in the first two rounds, who shared their experiences with the program.
The group of entrepreneurs that makes StartUp Popular is varied, with participants representing various industries such as retail; professional services; manufacturing; wholesalers; tourism and food and beverage; among others.
Participants are operating in more than 20 towns, and while the average age of participants is 36, there are entrepreneurs between 24 and 63. Meanwhile, 43 percent have female participation, much higher than the average of Popular’s regular portfolio and of the national average of about 30 percent.
To participate, visit startup.popular.com for the application and more information.