January 16th, 2008 | Published in Google.org
Last fall, a dozen Google employees served as lecturers, one-on-one consultants, and business plan evaluators for entrepreneurs participating in the Believe Begin Become business plan competition in Tanzania and Ghana. They were very impressed by the participants and winners, and they recognized that entrepreneurs in developing countries rarely get the chance to directly interact with investors to get the funding and support they need for their businesses. Together with TechnoServe, and using FlipVideo cameras, the volunteers filmed the entrepreneurs. Our video production team helped us quickly assemble the videos that now appear on the recently launched Believe Begin Become TechnoServe Channel on You Tube.
On the channel, you will find an inspiring group of entrepreneurs talking about the opportunities and challenges they face running their businesses. In Tanzania, the enterprises that we work with range from selling carbon credits to rebuilding a local high school and running a radio station -- businesses that you will have the opportunity to view firsthand on the channel. Perhaps you will be as inspired as we are. People who want to do more to support these small and medium-sized (SME) businesses in Africa and elsewhere, can contribute directly from the You Tube Channel by using the Google Checkout payment option. We hope that sharing these stories will raise awareness of SMEs, provide firsthand accounts of the experiences of entrepreneurs in Africa, and create a direct channel for helping these businesses grow and thrive.