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Devin D. Thorpe
Devin Thorpe

VC To Help Egypt Develop Startup Ecosystem

Steve Grizzell, one of the most experienced venture capitalists in Utah is heading to Egypt to help create an ecosystem for entrepreneurship to provide more jobs for young, educated people. He hopes that the model they create in Egypt can be exported to other developing countries.

Steve, who runs InnoVentures Capital, says, “Traditional businesses are not creating enough jobs anywhere in the world. This is particularly true in developing countries with a large population of young educated people. The solution being pushed is entrepreneurship. But entrepreneurship occurs within a much larger system. How do you create the system?”

He says he’s designing a system to fund entrepreneurs. “I’m attempting to create a funding structure from seed to private equity. I am also trying to put in place the components necessary to mentor entrepreneurs to build significant companies.”

Steve, who has lived and worked around the world, makes the case that solving this problem is vital for the future of the world. “Much of the unrest in the world is caused by the lack of opportunity and the subsequent loss of faith that your life will ever get better. Hopelessness leads to revolution which is usually violent like we see in the Middle East today,” he says.

On Thursday, January 7, 2016 at 1:00 Eastern, Steve will join me for a live discussion about his upcoming trip and his mission to develop the systems necessary for entrepreneurs to succeed. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.

You can download an audio podcast here or subscribe via iTunes.

Steve was a guest on an earlier iteration of my show nearly ten years ago. Watch that here.

More about InnoVentures Capital:

InnoVentures manages funds to provide loans and venture debt. The capital is used for growth by innovative businesses that can’t get loans from conventional sources.

Steve’s bio:

Twitter: @sgrizzell

Steve has worked on the issues of creating an entrepreneur focused economy in the United States and internationally in countries including Indonesia, Romania, Morocco, Norway and Trinidad. Steve manages two funds in Utah and has made dozens of investments over the last twenty years. He is leaving for Egypt in January 2016 as a consultant for moving the Egyptian venture industry forward. Steve’s goal is to figure out how to create success in a developing economy.

Steve is a member of the Social Venture Network.

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Devin D. Thorpe

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