How can my business idea change the world? What innovative, sustainable approaches can help us tackle today’s toughest global challenges? These are some of the questions 150 entrepreneurs came together to answer at Iniciativa Jovem’s LiveWIRE weekend, an event that aims to empower entrepreneurs and identify the 2019 Iniciativa Jovem cohort.

One entrepreneur said she choose to attend the LiveWIRE weekend because she wanted to give her business the best start.

“As we know, Shell Iniciativa Jovem is a programme that has excellence in supporting the entrepreneur to follow the best trail possible,” said Lorena Carniero. “Besides, I found it was a good way, a good place for me to start my venture.”

LiveWIRE weekend is the final stage of the Iniciativa Jovem selection process. Candidates must complete an application, participate in an interview, and then pitch their business ideas in front of a committee who then decides which participants get to join the programme.

However, for Iniciativa Jovem, LiveWIRE weekend is not only an opportunity to find its next cohort but also a chance to bring together the most innovative minds across Brazil. Designed as a startup weekend, LiveWIRE weekend brings together entrepreneurs and industry experts to work on the business plans, develop pitches, and attend workshops on everything from strategy and market research to finance and operations.

“During LiveWIRE weekend, we invite people from other companies, incubators, and accelerators,” said Leise Duarte, social performance advisor for Shell Brazil. “Even if the entrepreneurs don’t get selected for LiveWIRE, they can still learn during the workshops and also network.”

For one entrepreneur, this networking element was key.

“I graduated in Design, and I have no knowledge in business and entrepreneurship or a contact network,” said Flávia Antunes. “So I see this as an opportunity for me to expand my knowledge, to network, and to grow my business.”

At the end of LiveWIRE weekend, 82 entrepreneurs were invited to join the 2019 Iniciativa Jovem cohort. These participants will benefit from a five-month long training programme that includes management training, finance workshops, and mentorship opportunities.

And those that don’t get selected always have the opportunity to re-apply next year.

To learn more about Iniciativa Jovem, please visit their website.