Malta Enterprise and the University of Malta (UM) have announced a new collaboration to provide support and mentoring for start-ups in an effort to provide business newcomers with the necessary knowledge to access funding.
Earlier this week, UM Rector Professor Alfred Vella and Malta Enterprise CEO Kurt Farrugia signed a Memorandum of Understanding setting out a new framework of integrated support for start-ups.
Through the collaboration, UM will provide pre-application training for start-ups applying for funding from Malta Enterprise.
Successful applicants can access mentoring and support from TAKEOFF, the start-up incubator run by the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Business Incubation’s (CEBI) incubator facility, over a one-year period post-award.
Rector Vella said that, “Mentorship has a direct impact on the growth and survival rate of new businesses. With this advice coming from experts at the university, it makes everything all the more meaningful because the goals and achievements of these businesses will be better aligned with the knowledge, experience and research present on campus that are needed to set oneself apart from others.”
“This is the kind of support mechanism that will help these applicants unlock their potential, and I augur them success in their first critical years.”
Mr Farrugia explained that this mentoring service will assist applicants to better shape up their enterprise thinking.
“New business owners will therefore be able to project their business idea holistically when applying for funding at Malta Enterprise. This complements our leading efforts to the national ecosystem with regards to start-ups, as we recently launched startinmalta.com; a web portal aiming to serve as the main focal point for start-ups; both foreign and local.’’
Minister for Education Justyne Caruana, also in attendance, said, “This MoU is a clear example of how education is one of the pillars of our society and the economic sector. Education’s main purpose is to equip children and young adults with the skills they need to enter the labour market and build successful careers.”
“The Education Ministry supports all initiatives that bring the worlds of education and employment closer together. We urge educators and employers to work closely to improve our young’s preparation for contemporary careers and help them to transition more successfully from classroom benches to their chosen careers.”
Professor Russell Smith, Director of CEBI, said, “This is a milestone in support for new business ventures in Malta, and we are proud to be able to offer our proven programme in collaboration with Malta Enterprise.”
“In addition to this practical support, we will be collaborating on research-based reports which will be presented to the competent authorities within the Government of Malta, the European Commission, the European Parliament or the Council of the European Union, with the intention to support the development of National and European Policy.”
Further information and training material can be obtained here. The initiative forms part of the EU-funded I-KNOW project.
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