The Coca-Cola Foundation Gives $50,000 To Help Entrepreneurs In Greece Make Their Business Ideas A Reality


June 1, 2016

Athens,27.05.2016 –  The Coca-Cola Foundation has announced the donation of $50,000 to Venture Garden, a Greek entrepreneurship education program supported by The Hellenic Initiative, as part of Coca-Cola’s steadfast commitment to support entrepreneurship in Greece, a driving force for generating growth and employment in the country.

“Venture Garden” is a comprehensive educational and training program that helps emerging entrepreneurs of all ages and backgrounds to develop their skills, gain access to a continuously growing entrepreneurial network and receive hands-on training. The Program addresses two important needs in terms of entrepreneurial support in Greece: training to translate an idea into a viable business plan and comprehensive mentorship to implement the plan and build a revenue-generating business.

Venture Garden is a project co-created by the ALBA Graduate Business School at the American College of Greece in Athens and Anatolia School of Business at the American College of Thessaloniki, with the support of The Hellenic Initiative (THI). THI was founded in 2012 by Muhtar Kent, George David, Andrew N. Liveris, George P. Stamas and George M. Logothetis, to galvanize the support of the Greek Diaspora and philhellene community to assist Greece in these times of economic hardship. Venture Garden is one of the many THI programs supporting entrepreneurs in Greece.

Since its inception Venture Garden has supported more than 400 participants in Athens and Thessalonica, while more than 1,000 people have been through the evaluation process and/or attended seminars open to the public in Athens, Thessaloniki, Korinthos, Kalamata, Volos and Kavala. Even though in its early stages, the program has succeeded in supporting growth for incumbent teams with some of them reaching funding and others increasing their customer and employee base.

“We believe in the power of each and every individual to act as a ‘change-maker’ in Greece’s path toward recovery. Coca-Cola’s efforts are geared toward reigniting and supporting the Greek entrepreneurial spirit, which in turn, can stimulate the economy and employment. The Venture Garden program gives emerging entrepreneurs the opportunity to discover and unleash their true potential,” said Nectaria Metrakou, Senior Public Affairs and Communications Manager, Coca-Cola Hellas.

 

“Our program is an enabler of ideas worth pursuing and this is what The Coca-Cola Foundation grant will help us achieve,” added Michael Printzos, The Hellenic Initiative’s Director of Programming in Greece. “We enable promising talents to turn creative ideas and passion into business reality, and thereby foster growth, support employment and inspire more people to defy the challenges, pursue new perspectives and venture into the business world.”

The Coca-Cola Company and its Foundation committed to give back 1% of the Company’s annual net earnings to local communities, with the aim of actively supporting their sustainable development and long-term future. For Greece especially, in addition to supporting entrepreneurial growth and youth development, The Coca-Cola Foundation has advanced the development and implementation of water stewardship initiatives and other programs that strengthen communities by contributing nearly $4 million in Greece over the past five years.

The Coca-Cola Foundation is The Coca-Cola Company’s international philanthropic arm. Since its inception in 1984, the Foundation has given back more than $840 million to enhance the sustainability of local communities worldwide. For further information on The Coca-Cola Foundation, please visit: www.coca-colacompany.com/our-company/the-coca-cola-foundation.

About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world’s largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands and more than 3,800 beverage choices. Led by Coca-Cola, one of the world’s most valuable and recognizable brands, our company’s portfolio features 20 billion-dollar brands, 18 of which are available in reduced-, low- or no-calorie options. Our billion-dollar brands include Diet Coke, Coca-Cola Zero, Fanta, Sprite, Dasani, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Del Valle, Georgia and Gold Peak. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, we are the No. 1 provider of both sparkling and still beverages.  More than 1.9 billion servings of our beverages are enjoyed by consumers in more than 200 countries each day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world’s top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates. For more information, visit Coca-Cola Journey at www.coca-colacompany.com, follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/CocaColaCo, visit our blog, Coca-Cola Unbottled, at www.coca-colablog.com or find us on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/the-coca-cola-company.

Coca-Cola Hellas is a subsidiary of The Coca-Cola Company located in Greece. The company is responsible for brand marketing and protection in its geography.  In Greece, the bottler of the products of The Coca-Cola Company is Coca-Cola HBC Greece SAIC.

About The Hellenic Initiative: 

Our Mission: Investing in the future of Greece through direct philanthropy and economic revitalization. We empower people to provide crisis relief, encourage entrepreneurs, and create jobs. We are The Hellenic Initiative (THI) – a global movement of the Greek Diaspora.

Website: http://www.TheHellenicInitiative.org/http://onegreece.org;

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