Inaugural GEW Guatemala concludes successfully
Mark Marich (GEW global)
Nov 20, 2012
First year for Guatemala to host Global Entrepreneurship Week, but we were convinced of its success early on as my colleagues and I were lucky enough to meet two passionate organizers in Washington preceding GEW at the Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Education. Now, in the light of the past week we can welcome Guatemalans in the populous GEW family as full-fledged members.
To mark the start of the week and to kick off with a memorable event, the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor Report for Guatemala 2011-2012 was officially presented last Monday in the presence of the Minister of Economy and the Presidential Commissioner for Competitiveness and Investment of Guatemala. The report was featured in main local papers and on a number of TV channels (Canal Antigua, Noti 7, El Periódico, Prensa Libre amongst others) that undoubtedly raised the profile of the event and also fuelled awareness.
First Tuesday turned out to be the event with the most participants, where topics revolved around entrepreneurship and the notion of failure. 250 attendees followed the inspiring words of main speaker Juan Carlos Paiz, (Founder and CEO of Pani-Fresh), a major Guatemalan exporter and supplier for McDonalds in Latin-America.
Mr. Paiz’s thoughts on entrepreneurship are certainly worthy to remember – in his view; entrepreneurs, besides operating profitably, should bring prosperity to others, should care and invest in people. Trust, perseverance and humbleness when learning were all mentioned and he reminded the audience that it is a grave mistake to regard failure as the end, as it always marks the beginning of a new opportunity.
It was not only GEW that first set foot in Guatemala, but the first ever Startup Weekend was also part of the celebrations engaging over one hundred citizens. Other events of GEW Guatemala included a Women Entrepreneurship conference, the ‘In the Quest for a Startup Competition’; a KEC Talkshow. The week was made possible thanks to Francisco Marroquín University; the School of Economic Sciences; the Kirzner Entrepreneurship Center; Universidad del Valle de Guatemala; Universidad Rafael Landívar; Cámara de Industria de Guatemala and CIEN.
This post is a guest contribution from Daniel Szabo, a young Hungarian entrepreneur working out of the GEW Global offices in Washington, DC.
Daniel is a graduate student of the Corvinus University of Budapest. He works with future startup generations in Hungary through the Kairos Society and the Young Entrepreneurs Association (FIVOSZ), globally through the One Young World network.