Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs is a pilot project initiated by the European Union (EU). It aims at helping new entrepreneurs to acquire relevant skills for managing a small or medium-sized enterprise (SMEs) by spending time in a business in another EU country.
It contributes to improving their know-how and fosters cross-border transfers of knowledge and experience between entrepreneurs.
The specific objectives of the programme are:
- On-the-job-training for new entrepreneurs in SMEs elsewhere in the EU in order to facilitate a successful start and development of their business ideas;
- Exchanges of experience and information between entrepreneurs on obstacles and challenges to starting up and developing their businesses;
- To enhance market access and identification of potential partners for new and established businesses in other EU countries;
- Networking by building on knowledge and experience from other European countries between entrepreneurs.
Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs is financed by the European Commission and operated across 21 EU countries by the help of more than 100 intermediary organisations competent in business support (e.g. Chambers of Commerce, start-up centres, incubators etc.). Their activities are coordinated at European level by EUROCHAMBRES, the Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry, which acts as Support Office.
This pilot project will run until mid 2010, giving some 870 new entrepreneurs the chance to gain valuable experience in a stay lasting between 1 and 6 months. The budding entrepreneurs will gain relevant start-up and SME management knowledge in areas like financial and operational management, development of innovative products and services, successful sales and marketing practices, European commercial law and the single European market. For the host entrepreneurs this is an opportunity to access new skills and innovative knowledge, gain more intelligence about foreign markets and explore business internationalisation.