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Foundation 787 Empowers Individuals to Become Entrepreneurs

Foundation 787 is one of the leading organizations serving entrepreneurs in Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 2023 it's ready to work even harder to support further development of the startup ecosystem in B&H.

Entrepreneurship is one of the most effective tools empowering individuals to take control of their lives. Dajana Dzindo and Foundation 787 know that very well because they practice this belief daily.

A primary role of the Foundation 787 (F787) is to address issues and improve the position of women and youth in Bosnia and Herzegovina and to serve as a social equalizer of sorts. When it was founded in 2014, no one would have dreamed that this organization could become one of the critical actors in the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.

On the other hand, perhaps this was the logical outcome—entrepreneurship was built into the core of Foundation 787. Dajana Džindo, Executive Director of F787 and participant in Swiss EP’s global event - Peer Exchange Meetup 2022, explains:

Entrepreneurship is an excellent tool for individuals to take control of their lives. This has been the premise on which Foundation 787 has been established because entrepreneurship, with enough effort, leads to various forms of independence.

Using entrepreneurship as one of its main tools, F787 built up its presence, reputation, and expertise over the years, focusing on promoting and empowering individuals. They have spearheaded numerous entrepreneurial programs, training, events, consultations, and mentorship opportunities in the past eight years, creating safe learning spaces—most notably for female founders. Dajana recounts the results:

We gave a positive push to the startup ecosystem in B&H, as well as hope and hands-on support to hundreds of female founders to start and grow their businesses. We are very proud that we have been providing continuous entrepreneurial support over the years. Those founders who were reluctant to take the first steps knew that we would be there with our programs, events, and services anytime.

In 2022, the team stepped it up and organized events to make a permanent mark in the local startup community. They put on the fourth edition of the Tech Boost program, the Business Angel Summit, and the Female Founders Summit, proving in the process that Sarajevo had established its rightful place among startup hubs in the region.

Dajana recalls that, since F787 and Swiss EP have the same mission—to boost the local startup ecosystem—collaboration was quite natural:

Through contacts made through Swiss EP, we have developed long-lasting partnerships that helped us grow in various ways. That is of the utmost value to our collaboration. Also, as a result, hundreds of startups and SMEs have been supported, our team increased its capacity, and international and regional strategic partnerships have been made.

A clear mission, thought leadership, and a stakeholder mindset all led F787 to the point where it could easily be named one of the most significant actors in the entrepreneurial space in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the go-to place for emerging entrepreneurs, in particular for women founders. Now, the question is—where should they go from here? Dajana has a clear vision:

We hope to see F787 as a lead stakeholder supporting female-led startups and businesses achieving big international successes. In parallel, we will be working hard to support further development of the startup ecosystem in B&H, which is currently missing many key elements. And to get to this goal, we will collaborate within the ecosystem, educate decision-makers, and improve entrepreneurial programs.

Hopefully, more organizations and individuals will join Foundation 787 and Dajana in this vision. We certainly will! With such determination and hard work, there will be fewer missing elements in the entrepreneurial map of Bosnia and Herzegovina over time.