Deadline: October 1, 2023
Applications to join the NESsT and IKEA Social Entrepreneurship South America Accelerator Program 2023 are now open. NESsT and IKEA Social Entrepreneurship launched the first South America Accelerator program in 2020, which invested in 17 social enterprises, sustaining 1,500 jobs for excluded individuals across the region.
Building on the impact and learnings of the first program, NESsT is launching a new accelerator with the goal to support social enterprises to create and maintain 2,500 formal, fairly-compensated jobs and conserve the planet. Through this open call, they seek to welcome an initial cohort of 10 new social enterprises from Chile and/or Colombia into the program. Over the course of the next three years, they aim to extend this support to a total of 22 new companies.
During their time in the accelerator program, entrepreneurs (and their teams) receive direct business assistance from the NESsT Portfolio Managers, participate in workshops and events alongside other entrepreneurs in NESsT’s global portfolio, and access mentoring with IKEA professionals around the world. Additionally, they also access flexible financing that meets their needs. On average, social enterprises participate in the NESsT acceleration portfolio for 2-3 years.
- Type of financing:
- Recoverable grants equivalent to soft, long-term, interest-free loans.
- Grants (evaluated on a case by case basis).
- Investment amount per social enterprise:
- Average investment of a total of USD $50,000 throughout participation in the program.
- In their portfolio, investments to enterprises have ranged from USD $20,000 to $90,000 over a 2–3 year period.
- Open to social enterprises in Chile and Colombia that are in the validation phase (enterprises with a validated product or service but cannot support operations) and enterprises entering the growth stage (enterprises whose sales cover initial operations but cannot sustain growth.)
- Social enterprises that would be the best fit for this portfolio have a stable team that demonstrates potential to scale their business and social and environmental impact. They will also be considering enterprises that face obstacles when accessing financing from traditional sources due to the high-impact nature of their businesses, and that can most benefit from the advisory and mentoring services provided by the program.
- Enterprises in the following sectors are encouraged to apply:
- Circular economy
- Inclusive employment and professional development
- Sustainable agriculture/fishing
By applying to the accelerator program, social enterprises and their teams commit to allocating time to work with portfolio managers, engaging in the program’s required activities and upholding NESsT’s core values:
- Creating jobs that pay fair wages and prices and contribute to providing a quality of life for excluded and marginalized people.
- Addressing diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and implementing corresponding practices.
- Incorporating environmental sustainability practices into their business and social impact models.
- Review the application form and prepare all required information, including a video.
- Create a short video of no more than 3 minutes, where you explain:
- The business model
- The social impact: the at-risk community you seek to support and the role of the enterprise in their lives
- How you think your social enterprise can benefit from the acceleration program
- Upload the video to YouTube and copy and paste the link into the application form when prompted.
- Submit the application by October 1, 2023.
For more information, visit NESsT – IKEA Accelerator.