Sixteen entrepreneurs in Emprende360 turn their business idea into a reality

Through our Emprende 360° program, 16 aspiring entrepreneurs completed the business education curriculum to transform their business idea into reality. After a 12-month process with leading organizations in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, the cohort developed 11 business ideas for the Coamo and Ponce region and was awarded $2K in seed capital to jump-start each business.

The Emprende 360° program began in December of last year with the goal of decentralizing entrepreneurship education in the metropolitan area and developing new business ideas, using the visitor economy as a guide. Together with INprende, Centro para Emprendedores, Grupo Guayacán and Causa Local, Foundation for Puerto Rico (FPR) developed a sequential curriculum that integrates the methodologies of each entity, thus creating an innovative formula for the successful development of these business ideas and their owners. Through eight stages, with established goals and objectives, the participants learn about the different particular aspects of entrepreneurship.

"The program's impact area coincided casually with the communities that were shaken by the earthquakes, which in turn greatly affected the entrepreneurial ecosystem of the southern municipalities. Emprende 360°, without a doubt, was an incentive for these entrepreneurs who, despite the earthquakes and the pandemic, remained focused and today see the results of their work," added Frontera.

To end the program, the entrepreneurs participated in a virtual Demo Day, where they presented their concepts to a group of panelists composed by Luis Alvarado, president of the Southern Chamber of Commerce; Denisse Rodriguez, executive director of Colmena66; Rafael Ortíz, general director of Moonsail Capital; Abner Roque, Change Management Lead of Grupo Navi; and Tanairí Miranda, owner and president of BARRAS. This initiative allowed the entrepreneurs to expand their contact network in the business ecosystem, and receive feedback from this panel of experts and mentors.

These 16 entrepreneurs will provide new services and products in the southern area, and throughout the island, via digital platforms. Additionally, they will promote economic development in one of the most vulnerable regions on the island today, due to the impact of earthquakes.

Check out some of the ideas:

  1. D’Terraza, dedicated to the production of handmade pies for the gastronomy industry.

  2. Ruperto’s Design, an online clothing store with custom-made pieces, mostly aimed at plus-sized women.

  3. PR Soar Puerto Rico Summit: for outdoor, adventure and recreation, an outdoor recreational program where visitors can learn and experience workshops and/or skills activities such as camping, hiking, climbing and more.

  4. Boriculture, an online business dedicated to the sale of authentic Puerto Rican products, from groceries to handicrafts.

  5. Rejoice Natural Beauty, dedicated to the development of skincare products with natural ingredients.

  6. Phoenix Game Club, a global virtual platform for gamers, designed with a methodology that guarantees rankings to players according to their performance, with opportunities to compete worldwide.

  7. Sain Dessert, dedicated to making guilt-free desserts with vegan and keto alternatives.

  8. Thermal Villas, RV park and mobile hostelry located near the thermal baths of Coamo that will have elements of glamping and ecotourism.

  9. Living Wellness Lab, a place that will provide training and wellness services in harmony with nature.

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