Link Up! Financing diaspora entrepreneurship
Link Up! is planned as a comprehensive programme to support diaspora entrepreneurs through networking opportunities, capacity building and seed capital.The feasibility study will analyse the existing challenges in Austria to support diaspora entrepreneurs, identify the needs of diaspora entrepreneurs so that they are better able to contribute to their country of origin and assess the gaps that should be addressed for the benefit of diaspora entrepreneurship. The study will assess the potential for establishing a financial instrument and training facility for diaspora entrepreneurs. It will help to identify whether there is a need to build up new instruments at all, or if a “gap” (if at all) can be addressed through existing instruments or an expansion of such instruments. Apart from assessing the feasibility for the set-up of a financial instrument and related business training for diaspora, the study will explore the connection between integration and diaspora engagement for the (economic) development of the countries of origin. Finally, the feasibility study will serve as a basis for the development of a full proposal that will include quantifiable indicators and a strong monitoring and evaluation framework. Regarding the subsequent Link up! project the following outcomes are expected: At least 25 potential diaspora entrepreneurs have been provided with a business plan and start-up training in the first year; this number will increase by at least 20% each year. Up to 10 new diaspora-led small or medium sized businesses are established in the selected countries of origin per year. This could translate to 2-4 new diaspora-led SMEs per country of origin per year.