• The winners include a university student who created a project for the inclusion of the hearing impaired, an online content startup and a micro-entrepreneur who produces plus size clothing inside Paraíba.
  • The judging panel brought together executives from the Bank and Endeavor, ACE and Aliança Empreendedora, partners in the initiative.
  •  Selected candidates were awarded financial support, scholarships and mentoring.

Santander announced yesterday the winners of Empreenda Santander 2019, the largest university entrepreneurship program in Brazil. The event was held at the Santander Theater, in São Paulo, and was attended by the Bank's president in the country, Sergio Rial.

There were more than 4,700 entries in this edition, which recognized the best proposals in three categories: University Entrepreneur, University & Microentrepreneur and Startup.

From the 30 finalists who reached the last stage, the jury chose three winning projects, whose names were released after evaluation by the judging panel, which included members from both Santander and partners Endeavor, ACE and Aliança Empreendedora. From now on, those selected will receive financial support, scholarships and guidance from partner companies.

During the recognition ceremony, the president of Santander Brasil emphasized the bank's role in promoting entrepreneurship and education in the country and reminded the finalists that entrepreneurship is synonymous with risk-taking. “The winners embraced the risk and made that risk a transforming spring of their lives. Without intelligent risk, there is no progress, "said Rial.

Bruno Costa Candia, a student at the National Telecommunications Institute (Inatel), was the winner of the Entrepreneurial University category with the Aurem project, an assistive technology company, which facilitates the inclusion of students with hearing problems within educational institutions.

"It has been many days of work, many months and even years. That will make a big difference for me because it will help me grow as a person, as a professional and entrepreneur," said Bruno Costa after earning recognition, which includes a financial contribution from R $ 30 thousand, a scholarship and mentoring conducted by ACE.

With a proposal to innovate in the communication and corporate education sector, Netshow.me, designed by Rafael Belmonte, was the winner among the "Startups". The company has developed an online video streaming solution. "We have high expectations, especially to help us with various challenges in our growth," said the project leader, who received an award of $ 100,000, in addition to a scholarship and mentoring to be performed by Endeavor.

The project led by Karina Dias, from Unifacisa, was awarded the University & Microentrepreneur category, which aims to harness the knowledge of a university to leverage microentrepreneur business.

Karina Dias guided micro-entrepreneur Erika do Nascimento to boost her plus size clothing business in Sapé, a city in the interior of Paraiba. "For me, it's a matter of self-esteem, of overcoming. The recognition and the fact that I can participate in the program was wonderful. I can only thank Santander and Unifacisa University for that," she said.

The microentrepreneur will receive a financial contribution of R $ 5,000 and a mentoring from the university with the support of the Entrepreneurial Alliance, which will receive R $ 15,000 to operationalize the training.

Entrepreneurship is one of the pillars of Santander Universities. Empreenda Santander aims to encourage entrepreneurial ideas and projects throughout Brazil. We conclude this award with the certainty that this objective is being met. There are many promising projects that will be boosted to achieve the performance and prominence they deserve,” said Steven Assis, head of Santander Universities.

Carioca Marcelo Guedes Roque, from Price Certo, was the recipient of the Startup category in the latest edition of the program in 2017. Price Certo is a price formation and results simulation startup for retailers and service providers. The platform aims to simplify what today is very difficult for SMEs: accurately pricing to understand the impact on indicators and monthly business results. He said the initiative was a watershed for his company: “The training at Babson College coupled with Bank executive mentoring and the acceleration of Endeavor has moved our company from water to wine. We have been growing a lot since then. The program is not a Bank marketing ploy. It's serious work. There are many competent people directly involved in this support”, he guarantees.

About Empreenda Santander

Empreenda Santander is part of the global Santander X project, with which the Bank promotes university entrepreneurship around the world. Empreenda Santander is a complete entrepreneur development program designed to help students, startups and microentrepreneurs thrive on their business through mentoring, financial support and scholarships. The initiative is the evolution of the Santander Universities Awards, held until 2015 and during the 11 years of its existence were received more than 20 thousand entries, 161 awarded projects and R $ 11 million in prizes.

About Santander Universities

Banco Santander has a commitment to higher education through Santander Universities, a unique international initiative that sets it apart from other financial institutions. Santander is the world's largest private investor in education support (Varkey Report / UNESCO-Fortune 500) with over 1,200 collaboration agreements with universities and academic institutions in 21 countries. Since 2002, the organization has allocated more than € 1.6 million to academic initiatives and programs.