AUBG EMBA Students Joanna Marinova, Slav Iliev Support Roma Entrepreneurs in Prestigious Competition

Joanna Marinova (EMBA’21) and Slav Iliev (EMBA’21) have become the first Eastern European team to compete in the Rockefeller Acumen Academy Student Social Enterprise Accelerator.

The two EMBA students entered the competition, which aims to solve a poverty-associated problem through social innovation, with a project that supports the financial inclusion of Roma entrepreneurs. The most vulnerable group in Europe, Roma people often face difficulties to receive financing for their businesses. Joanna, Executive Director at the “Lachezar Tsotsorkov” Foundation, and Slav, Retail and Network Manager Renault & Dacia, together with the Trust for Social Achievement (TSA) and their Junior Program Officer Lucy Georgieva joined forces to work on a solution to the problem.

A 5-week course, several assignments, a pitch deck, an interview and an 8-week accelerator later, the professionals have further developed their proposal to include "business services, training, legal consulting, as well as support services to complement the financing" of Roma entrepreneurs.

The whole interview with Joanna and Slav and more information about the initiative can be found here: