Meet Yunus Social Business Balkans Project Manager


My first message to Risers is to see the impact they want to create as their mission and build around a business initiative that helps them find their passion to both do business and generate the economic results they expect, but also generate the impact they are passionate about. (…) The second message is to be patient.

Shkelzen Marku - YSB Balkans Project Manager

What is Yunus Social Business Balkans?

Yunus Social Business Balkans (YSB Balkans) is a foundation that started in mid-2012 supporting development of the social and impact entrepreneurship ecosystem in Albania and then, since 2015, it has expanded its activities towards other Western Balkan countries. YSB Balkans’ goal is to foster the creation and development of an enabling ecosystem in the Western Balkans countries that empowers entrepreneurs to address social problems in a financially sustainable way. YSB does this through running local inspiration/awareness campaigns, implementing incubation and acceleration programs, facilitating access to financing and supporting capacity development of entrepreneurship ecosystem actors in these countries. 

During these years we have supported: 

  • More than 800 entrepreneurs with capacity building (of which 130 social and impact entrepreneurs) through our incubation and acceleration programs and;
  • Have facilitated about EUR 2.3 million in investments to supported startups to more than 230 entrepreneurs (of which 53 social or impact entrepreneurs)

Also, during these years, our supported businesses have created and/or sustained more than 1,400 jobs altogether.

How do you and your local incubator contribute to raising awareness of the importance of social entrepreneurship?

We design and implement various awareness raising activities, including a combination of open and targeted information sessions, social media campaigns, implementation of talk shows, peer to peer exchanges, tailored events around  particular topics, sharing information on various opportunities for contributing to solving social problems in an entrepreneurial way, etc. 

How are you helping young entrepreneurs in their project?

We provide various types of support to our young entrepreneurs, including training, coaching and mentoring sessions tailored to their specific needs in order to help them not only acquire knowledge and skills but also to advance step by step, throughout the project, from the idea design to the establishment and growth of the business and generation of positive impact for their targeted community.

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