USAID Recognizes Mexican Entrepreneurs for Novel Approaches to Development Challenges

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
USAID Press Office
202-712-4320 | Email:

MEXICO CITY - To foster innovation in Mexico, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Rajiv Shah, U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Earl Anthony Wayne, and Mexican Secretary of Economy Ildefonso Guajardo today awarded four Mexican entrepreneurs with grants through USAID's Innovation Fund for the Americas.

At an event announcing the awardees, Shah said, "We must continue to fund breakthrough, innovative solutions like these four projects in order to solve our most complicated development challenges. Entrepreneurs are our gateway to sustainable, creative ideas that can make a lasting impact on many people's lives."

Totaling nearly $800,000 in grants, the awardees will implement their projects to improve living standards, provide job training, and increase incomes for thousands of marginalized people across Mexico.

The awardees will:

  • Foster relations between entrepreneurs and investors through capital ventures and angel investors.
  • Prevent greenhouse gas emissions through innovative uses of agricultural waste to generate energy.
  • Improve the ability of electric grids to absorb energy generated from renewable sources. 

Latin America and the Caribbean region have experienced more than a decade of strong economic growth, declining poverty, and deepening democracy, however, development challenges persist. Deteriorating citizen security, poor educational outcomes, high levels of youth unemployment, and extreme vulnerability to natural disasters are just some of the difficult issues facing countries in the region. To address these challenges, USAID launched the Innovation Fund for the Americas (IFA) to invest in cost-effective breakthrough solutions to development challenges in Latin America and the Caribbean. IFA pilots, rigorously tests, and brings to scale promising projects with the potential to significantly improve development outcomes.

USAID is a leader in harnessing science, technology, and innovation to improve lives around the world. The Agency, along with 32 partners, recently launched the U.S. Global Development Lab to advance a science-and technology-based approach to development, creating a new global marketplace of innovations and taking them to scale to help end extreme poverty by 2030.

The U.S. Agency for International Development is leading the U.S. Government's efforts
to end extreme poverty and promote resilient, democratic societies.

Last updated: June 19, 2014

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