Baghdad, Iraq – The Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN) and the Station Foundation for Entrepreneurship have partnered to launch Iraq’s first Startup Huddle chapter in Baghdad. Startup Huddle is a GEN program that supports the growth of local startup communities while crowdsourcing advice and support for its entrepreneurs.
The program provides direct support to entrepreneurs and addresses a critical element of success for all entrepreneur ecosystems – connectivity. According to GEN research, startup communities with higher levels of local connectivity support a higher number of startups – and that founders with high levels of connectivity grow their revenue twice as fast as those with lower levels.
“To build stronger startup ecosystems in places beyond typical hubs like Silicon Valley and Shanghai, GEN focuses on driving connectedness to enable knowledge sharing and expand opportunity,” said Jonathan Ortmans, president of the Global Entrepreneurship Network. “Iraq has significant potential for growth and we are excited to partner with The Station to support the burgeoning startup community in Baghdad and beyond.”
Startup Huddle Baghdad joins a network of more than 50 chapters worldwide. The Station, one of Iraq’s leading co-working spaces, will host Startup Huddle events monthly starting on June 19. At each event, local founders will give six-minute presentations outlining challenges facing their companies. Each presentation is followed by a 20-minute conversation with an audience of peers, mentors, educators and advisers who provide constructive criticism focused on finding solutions and increasing founder know-how. With new founders cycling through each gathering, and previous presenters joining the audience to give back, the community continues to expand while connections deepen.
“The need for an empowered private sector in Iraq has never been more apparent,” said Ashley Barlow, programs manager at The Station. “Multiple innovation hubs across the country support the entrepreneurial community to achieve their goals and prove that the private sector is a viable option for success. Through Startup Huddle and the wider Global Entrepreneurship Network, The Station is poised to highlight these talents and Iraq’s growing entrepreneurship ecosystem to the international community. It will be a catalyst of opportunities to help our startups grow, mature and learn."
"We hope to continue building our community of entrepreneurs, not only in Baghdad but network with those across the country to ensure that we can lend our support to those outside of the major hubs, making this a truly national initiative and connecting all of Iraq into a global network," he added.
To learn more about Startup Huddle Baghdad or to join a local event, visit www.startuphuddle.co.
About Startup Huddle
Run by the Global Entrepreneurship Network in partnership with local organizers, Startup Huddle is a program designed to help one entrepreneur at a time while strengthening the local ecosystem. Entrepreneurs discover challenges to the solutions they face through purposeful engagement with a broad array of voices from their local community. Currently, there are local Startup Huddle chapters in more than 50 cities around the world. For more information, visit startuphuddle.co.
About the Global Entrepreneurship Network
The Global Entrepreneurship Network operates projects and programs in 180 countries to make it easier for anyone, anywhere to start and scale a business. By fostering deeper cross-border collaboration and initiatives between entrepreneurs, investors, researchers, policymakers and entrepreneurial support organizations, GEN works to fuel healthier start and scale ecosystems that create more jobs, educate individuals, accelerate innovation and strengthen economic growth. For more information, visit www.genglobal.org.
About the Station Foundation for Entrepreneurship
The Station Foundation for Entrepreneurship is one of Iraq’s lead co-working spaces, and Baghdad’s first co-working space. First established in 2018, as an independent, non-governmental, and non-profit organization, it became the cornerstone for Iraqi youth with fresh and inventive ideas to set a first foot into the business world and entrepreneurial projects. We have since attracted nationwide demand for our services and have recently expanded to Mosul in Northern Iraq. The experience at The Station goes beyond merely a physical space; we build communities, drive acceleration, and inspire a culture of collaboration. For more information, view The Station’s profile.