Citi Foundation and Youth Business International Launch a Regional Youth Entrepreneurship Programme in Europe

and Youth
Business International
(YBI) today announced the launch of a
regional programme to support young people in their efforts to become
entrepreneurs. Citi, through its Pathways to Progress initiative will
invest $1mn in the programme.

“Expanding Youth Economic Opportunities through Entrepreneurship” will
be established in six countries throughout Europe and will provide
entrepreneurship training to 5500 young people and help them to start or
develop almost 1700 businesses over the next two years.

The regional approach of this partnership will enable the sharing of
best practice, knowledge and methodologies by cross border interaction.
The programme, which will be implemented by YBI members, will tackle
unemployment and drive sustainable economic development in Spain,
Germany, France, Italy, The Netherlands and Sweden with the support of
the respective Citi offices.

Rachael Barber, Head of Community Development, EMEA at Citi commented:
“Citi’s Pathways to Progress initiative is a commitment by Citi across
the world to give young people the opportunity to develop their
workplace skills and leadership experience and enable them to compete in
the 21st century economy. We’re thrilled to partner with YBI
and their member organisations to support young people in our cities
across Western Europe.”

She added: “The Citi Foundation and the Economist Intelligence Unit
recently launched new research showing that 79% of young people living
in cities across Europe want to be self-employed, to start or grow a
small business. The Citi Foundation’s partnership with YBI will make
this a reality, acting as a catalyst for development and sustainability
of high potential businesses that will create jobs and support economic

YBI is building on the successful experience of other regional
programmes it has created, such as Youth Business Caribbean and Latin
America Youth Entrepreneurship Programme.

Andrew Devenport, CEO of YBI: “A regional approach to a youth
entrepreneurship programme ensures scale of impact through combining the
resources, knowledge and capabilities of experienced YBI members working
at national level to support young people start of grow their own
business. Europe is in need of such a programme and I am confident that
YBI’s regional model and Citi’s catalytic support will help tackle
unemployment in Europe and drive the much needed sustainable economic


Youth Business International (YBI) is a global network of independent
non-profit initiatives helping young people start and grow their own
business and create employment. YBI supports under-served young
entrepreneurs with a combination of training, access to capital,
mentoring, and other business development services. YBI members have
helped over 100,000 young people to create their own business and
generate employment. An estimated 70% of these businesses are still
trading after three years, with many going on to create significant
levels of employment and further benefits for their communities.

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the
lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in
efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities
for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant
cities. The Citi Foundation’s “More than Philanthropy” approach
leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our
mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more
information, visit


Julio Carlavilla
Western Europe Public
Affairs Cluster Head
Business International

Andreea Bordei
Communications Manager
(0) 2033262099