THI Grant Energizes Chios’ Entrepreneurship Community

The GreenHouse, created to enhance and promote Greek entrepreneurship, has grown to include GreenHouse Chios. Photo: Courtesy of The Hellenic Initiative

ATHENS – The GreenHouse, created to enhance and promote Greek entrepreneurship, has grown to include GreenHouse Chios, which organized a project in cooperation with the Maria Tsakos Public Benefit Foundation–International Centre for Maritime Research and Tradition, and the Chios Chamber of Commerce. The events of the project, which took place November 22-26, included a multitude of free-of-charge activities mainly designed for entrepreneurs, aspiring entrepreneurs, as well as high school students.

This year, thanks to THI’s support, GreenHouse has broadened its horizons and expanded its efforts to support entrepreneurship throughout Greece, both geographically and in terms of the project’s overall results. GreenHouse is transforming from a three-day entrepreneurship workshop into a five-day modular activity organized in cities throughout Greece to enhance entrepreneurial action.

The GreenHouse Chios, included a multitude of free-of-charge activities mainly designed for entrepreneurs, aspiring entrepreneurs, as well as high school students. Photo: Courtesy of The Hellenic Initiative

Attendees of Chios’s GreenHouse had the chance to participate in the two-day entrepreneurship workshop, one to one speed mentoring sessions, educational sessions on digital media use in business, and discussions around family businesses. Moreover, prominent businesspersons such as Ilias Vartholomaios, CEO of OWIWI, Vicky Dallas, of 9AM Media Labs, Danai Koukoulomati, Founder of Allios Tours, and Themis Papadimopoulos, founder of Visitplaka.gr, shared their thoughts and experience with the event’s participants and with students of the Tsakos Enhanced Education Nautical School and with many more stakeholders.

The GreenHouse project was created to enhance and promote Greek entrepreneurship, helping anyone who wants to grow their business ideas regardless of age or range of economic activity. Organized by The Hellenic Initiative in collaboration with the Alba Graduate Business School of The American College of Greece over the past six years it has already hosted events in seven cities in Greece, Athens, Patras, Heraklion, Kalamata, Corinth, Chalkida and Sparta and has supported 442 entrepreneurs so far.

An attendee of the GreenHouse project at Chios stated: “Without doubt my participation in GreenHouse Chios, has taught me a lot. Through the workshop, not only did I learn about the whole process of the implementation of a business idea and the importance of working as a team with unknown people with whom I had similar interests and goals, but also, I got the chance to put the theory into practice. Thank you GreenHouse for this life experience!”

The GreenHouse, created to enhance and promote Greek entrepreneurship, has grown to include GreenHouse Chios. Photo: Courtesy of The Hellenic Initiative

GreenHouse is just one of the many aspects of the Venture Garden, an entrepreneurship-educational program, conducted by Alba Graduate Business School, The American College of Greece in Athens, and the American College of Thessaloniki under the auspices of The Hellenic Initiative. It has evolved into one of Greece’s premier entrepreneurial educational programs, having helped over 415 ideas to grow into businesses.

Mr. George Svokos, THI Board Member, said, “THI has been delighted to both witness and contribute to the growth of the entrepreneurial spirit in Greece. While it is most obvious in the big cities, it is crucial that it spread throughout Greece, espeicially to provinces and islands far from Athens and Thessaloniki, and that is what GreenHouse does.”

THI’s Program Director Michael Printzos said, “After the successful GreenHouse event at Sparta, it was Chios’ turn to show us how vivid is the interest of Greeks in entrepreneurship across Greece. In the Hellenic Initiative we are very happy to see this active response of Greek entrepreneurs to our call and we are committed to bringing similar initiatives to every corner of our country.”