Innovation and entrepreneurship: The role of business incubation
In many developing countries, the resources necessary to support the development of entrepreneurs and SMEs are scarce including: infrastructure, business advice and mentoring, networking, financing and security. To address these problems, infoDev launched its business incubator programme in 2002, which is currently supporting a global network of over 150 incubators in more than 70 developing countries. A comprehensive impact assessment of this programme was completed in 2007 and the key findings are included here. Successful incubators were led by dynamic, visionary leaders, who often had an influence on policy and attitudes towards entrepreneurship beyond their client base; other important contributions were made by universities, foundations and corporations who were involved in mentoring, sharing facilities and research as well as board membership. Most clients and incubators had difficulty accessing private investment.