bp Azerbaijan is sponsoring a new project in support of the development of the country’s startup sector. The project, which will be implemented in collaboration with the Innovation Agency of Azerbaijan, aims to develop strong national startup capacity capable to integrate into the European business ecosystem.
The project will be based on structured programmes including educational and capacity building trainings, as well as support and consultancy activities provided by collaborative efforts of international and local public and private partners using their expertise, network and resources. These programmes will be combined with a wide range of mentoring and coaching activities designed to introduce the European innovation ecosystem focusing on Hungary (Central Europe), Germany and the United Kingdom (Western Europe) to the participants in the project.
Bakhtiyar Aslanbayli, bp’s Vice President for the Caspian region, Communications and Advocacy, said: ”We are pleased to have this opportunity to support the development of the country’s start up community. We expect that this new project will link representatives of the community to the European innovation ecosystem helping them build strong and successful international expansion strategies and get integrated into the European ecosystem.
“One of the main aims of the project is to support capacity building for the Innovation Agency of Azerbaijan through cooperation enhancement with EU-based and regional innovation ecosystems. We expect the project will have a strong and sustainable impact on the overall startup capacity of the country providing access to the international innovation knowledge and expertise.”
The focal point of the project is its capacity building component “Discover Europe” – a two-module training programme. The first module is for young entrepreneurs who have a start-up business or are company managers or owners and want to open up to the European market. This module will focus on business building and identifying potential European partners. The second module is for talented university students who have the ambition to set up a start-up business but lack an entrepreneurial experience.
At the conclusion, four successful graduates from each training module – eight in total, will have an opportunity to travel to Europe to be introduced to international innovation hubs.
The value of this one-year project is 272,000 AZN and it will be implemented by the local company Turan Trade.
bp has been present in Azerbaijan for 28 years safely, efficiently and reliably operating major oil and gas exploration, development and transportation projects. To date, together with its partners, bp has invested around $80 billion into projects it operates in the country. In Azerbaijan, we are committed to supporting sustainability efforts focusing on the areas where we believe we can make the most difference.
Our extensive social investment activities and capacity-building efforts in the country have had a positive impact and brought tangible benefits to people, improving their lives and making difference.
Our social investments cover such areas as building local capabilities, education, development of communities, local enterprises, the environment, sporting potential as well as research and promotion of the country’s rich cultural heritage. Overall, since the start, bp itself and together with its co-venturers in the joint ventures that bp operates in Azerbaijan, has spent more than $94 million on social investment projects in this country.
In Azerbaijan, bp directly employs around 2,400 Azerbaijani citizens who make over 90 per cent of the company’s professional staff.