The Application Process for the Sixth Edition of the High-Potential Entrepreneurs Program – Dare2Scale – is Now Open

For the sixth consecutive year, the Dare2Scale (D2S) growth program by Endeavor will be held. Starting today, April 8, 2024, companies from all over Bulgaria and from all sectors of the economy, with a turnover of at least 100,000 euros for the past year and up to 150 employees, can apply for a spot in the program through a specially created platform. The deadline for applications is April 30, 2024.

The application process is in two stages – founders should declare their interest in participating and fill out the application form. Upon approval, they move to the second stage, where the Dare2Scale team, mentors, and business leaders from Endeavor’s network will interview the candidates and select the final participants. Founders wishing for additional consultation can sign up for an introductory session with the program team. Over the past five years, more than 50 of the country’s most promising companies have gone through the program, and since 2023, its methodology has also been successfully applied in other Endeavor offices.

To encourage the new generation of entrepreneurs who have a validated business model and realized revenues but do not fully meet the participation criteria, for the first time this year, a quota for young entrepreneurs will be introduced. They can participate in the program under easier conditions. Once again, Endeavor reserves a place for organizations or companies that contribute to society.

The program is organized by the Bulgarian office of Endeavor, a global entrepreneurial organization represented in over 40 markets. The Bulgarian office opened in 2015, and to date, it has supported 130+ entrepreneurs from 70+ companies in three programs – the Endeavor Global Program, Regional Support Program, and Dare2Scale.

The main partner of Dare2Scale since its pilot edition has been Postbank. The program is also supported by the Software Group, the Bulgarian Small and Medium Entreprises Promotion Agency (BSMEPA), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the America for Bulgaria Foundation, and the capital partner SeedBlink.

The previous fifth edition featured the most resource opportunities for participants to date – 9 group workshops, 4 networking events, and over 130 donated hours of mentoring by consultants from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and business leaders from the Endeavor network. For another year, several strategic partnerships were formed between the participating companies. Among the leading lecturers of the workshops were Kalin Radev (CEO of Software Group), Svetozar Georgiev (co-founder of Telerik Academy and the Campus X incubator), Vince Gaydarzhiev (founder of Alcatraz.ai), Petar Mitev (founder of Chaos Group), Filip Popov (Director of Small Business Banking at Postbank), and others. Detailed information about the program is available here.

Dare2Scale will take place in Sofia and will last four months – from September to December 2024. Company founders will have the opportunity to participate in training in key areas for the development of every scaling business. Topics will be selected based on the needs of the accepted companies, and there will be both mandatory and elective training. Each company will also have access to at least eight mentoring sessions. On the one hand, with the local mentor network of Endeavor, whose mentors will support the founders with their entrepreneurial expertise. On the other hand, with associates and directors from PwC Bulgaria, who for the third year will work individually with all participants. They will be able to join events where they will meet and exchange experiences with key figures in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. The program will conclude with the final event – Demo Day, during which companies will present their businesses to a jury of established business leaders, media, other founders, and investors.

Momchil Vasilev, Executive Director of Endeavor Bulgaria:

“After the proven success of the Dare2Scale growth program, which was confirmed by all participants at the end of the fifth edition, Endeavor once again opens its doors to a new wave of entrepreneurs with vision and readiness to support the ecosystem’s development. For another year, we welcome innovative founders who have the potential to make their mark and expand their activities both domestically and internationally. Dare2Scale is built on a philosophy of continuous improvement and the aspiration to meet the needs of each specific cohort. By providing personalized support, mentoring from proven entrepreneurs and professional consultants, as well as networking events aimed at strengthening connections within the ecosystem, we aim to give entrepreneurs the tools they need to grow faster and more sustainably in today’s dynamic business environment.”

Petia Dimitrova, Chief Executive Officer and Chairperson of the Management Board of Postbank:

“Being part of Dare2Scale for the sixth consecutive year is gratifying and, as with each of our previous participations, very demanding. The resource-rich approach of the previous edition is more than indicative, and the fact that this year, for the first time, a quota for young entrepreneurs who can participate in the program under easier conditions will be introduced clearly demonstrates the organizers’ desire to cover the full spectrum of developing companies. We look forward to this edition, which once again embodies the formula for successful interaction, connectivity, and growth within the economic ecosystem.”