SANTIAGO, Chile, Dec. 6, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Latin America's largest entrepreneurship and innovation event ever was held in Santiago, Chile on December 4-6. On hand to help draft the Pacific Alliance's innovation and entrepreneurship roadmap were some sixty entrepreneurs, twelve venture capital funds, and 40 local and foreign speakers.
According to Chilean Foreign Affairs Minister Alfredo Moreno, the three-day Forum was "A major step for Chile and the Pacific Alliance, and especially for our entrepreneurs and innovators. The First Entrepreneurship and Innovation Forum is concrete proof that we can work together to develop new ideas and promote entrepreneurship. The Forum showcased the Alliance's tremendous economic potential and resolve to support entrepreneurship and innovation".
"This is an unprecedented event. Never before had four countries joined together as a bloc to advance entrepreneurship and innovation", said ProChile Director Carlos Honorato. "We have to tell the world what the Pacific Alliance is up to, and few can accomplish that better than our entrepreneurs".
Chilean Economic Affairs Minister Felix De Vicente noted that fulfilling the Pacific Alliance's core development goals "…requires increasing competitiveness and productivity, and one way to achieve this is to support entrepreneurship and innovation. Events such as LAB4+ help coordinate efforts to enhance the innovation ecosystem across member countries".
Alliance-Wide Cooperation Agreements
Chief among Forum outputs were partnership and cooperation agreements by a range of players active in entrepreneurship and innovation across Alliance countries.
Trade development agencies ProChile, Proexport Colombia, ProMexico and PromPeru agreed to work together in promoting foreign ventures and innovation across member countries.
In addition, the Chilean Entrepreneurship Association and counterparts from member countries set up the Association of Latin American Entrepreneurs, a first step toward establishing entrepreneurship hotspots across the region.
Other initiatives launched at the event included Women of the Pacific, a partnership designed to help identify common solutions to issues facing women entrepreneurs, while investor group Angels of the Pacific undertook to work toward market integration in support of innovative, promising ventures across member countries.
Pacific Alliance Pitch Day
On December 4 the Chile Foundation hosted Pacific Alliance Pitch Day. Twenty entrepreneurs, five from each member country, gathered to pitch ideas to eleven investment funds from Mexico, Peru, Colombia, Germany, the United States, Canada, and Chile.
Chile Foundation Business and Enterprise Manager Andres Pesce said that "LAB4+ is a seminal event for the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Supporting entrepreneurs has been the Foundation's focus since 1976. We are excited to play a role as Chile looks forward with unprecedented anticipation to promising partnerships with Peru, Colombia, and Mexico. It is both an honor and a privilege to host initiatives such as LAB4+ Pitch Day. The Pacific Alliance is key to making entrepreneurship the engine of regional growth. With innovation a global game, players must be plugged into the world and grow the density of connections across Alliance member countries", Pesce added.
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