Chivas Regal has launched its Chivas Venture 2018 global search to find start-ups looking to change the world for the better. The initiative will cover 29 countries, with one winner selected from each market and given the opportunity to participate in a dedicated accelerator programme. Online voting will decide the allocation of the first $200,000 portion of the fund.
Previous finalists have been working on projects to turn waste into housing, furniture and fashion, make clean water accessible to the world’s population, and eradicate poverty tax. Last year saw Thailand’s Siam Organic, which is looking to end small-scale farmers’ poverty, walked away with the largest sum, receiving $400,000.
Since its launch in 2014, almost 6,000 social entrepreneurs have applied to receive a share of the annual $1 million fund, and the $2 million given away over the first two years of the programe has been used to support start-ups that now have over 300,000 beneficiaries in more than 40 countries across the globe, according to Chivas Regal.
UK-based WeFarm, a P2P knowledge-sharing platform for farmers, picked up more than $200,000 from the fund, using the cash to boost technology and data analytics. The software is now better-adapted to low levels of literacy and able to interpret farmers’ questions. It is also able to switch between languages, as some users may sign up in one language, such as English, but submit questions in another language, such as Swahili.
Guatemala’s Wakami sells handmade fashion accessories produced in rural communities, to retailers around the world. The company received $126,000 from the fund enabled it to outsource expert services such as communications, advertising and branding to help build an international brand.
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Image: Chivas Venture