While travelling around Latin America, Linda Rottenberg noticed a troubling trend.
“I was noticing that there were no jobs,” she said in a recent interview with OneWire CEO Skiddy von Stade, “and everyone I was meeting felt that they didn’t want a government job, but no one else was hiring… And I kept saying ‘Why aren’t you starting a business!’ And I’d tell the story of Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak in the garage and they’d say, this is Latin America. No one is funding me to start my crazy idea…and I don’t even have a garage.”
From that moment on Rottenberg went on a mission to support entrepreneurship in emerging markets — to help the people who already had the motivation.
“I just had seen too much talent,” she explains, “And I knew there were great ideas, and I knew if we could just marry a few stories with some people that had the expertise, the mentoring, and the capital, that this would come to life.”
That’s how Rottenberg’s venture, Endeavour, was born. Now it operates in over 20 countries, creating 580 companies. and has helped over 900 committed entrepreneurs with funding.
“These are people who are changing their communities. These are people who are creating really high wage jobs — they’re changing cultures. They’re creating a role model effect.”
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