Lisbon becomes the first city to receive the European Entrepreneurial Region award, alongside Northern Ireland and Valencia.
EUROCITIES member Lisbon was revealed as one of the winners of the European Entrepreneurial Region 2015 award at a ceremony in Brussels on 25 June. Lisbon becomes the first city to receive the award, and was recognised alongside Northern Ireland and Valencia.
Accepting the award, Antonio Costa, mayor of Lisbon, described how his city has “great potential as an entrepreneur city, a real start-up city”. Lisbon has been working hard to position itself as a hub for entrepreneurship, making the most of its location as a gateway to the Americas, Africa and the EU. The city has put into place a range of initiatives to support new businesses, such as ‘Empresa na hora’ to help set up businesses in a short space of time; Startup Lisboa business incubator and urban regeneration projects; and the Lisbon Youth Entrepreneurship programme, which provides education and training for young people in the field of entrepreneurship. The city’s ‘Lisbon Challenge’ is another such measure, that selects startups to receive tailored mentoring and support, and has hosted sessions in Boston, London and Sao Paolo.
The award recognises Lisbon’s efforts to boost entrepreneurship and implement key EU policies such as the Small Business Act and the Europe 2020 Strategy for Growth and Jobs. Presenting the award, Ramón Luis Valcárcel Siso, president of the Committee of the Regions, described Lisbon’s achievements as “a model of how cities and regions can translate Europe 2020 objectives into concrete actions, tailored to local needs”.
In August 2013, we published a ‘cities in action’ case study on the Lisbon Incubators Network, which connects different business incubators around the city to create a supporting ‘ecosystem’ for entrepreneurs. The network began with the Startup Lisboa incubator, which has helped regenerate a city centre district by occupying old buildings and attracting young entrepreneurs. You can read the full case study at the link below.
To find out more about the European Entrepreneurial Region of the Year award, click here.