Next Steps for the Eco-Challenge

Washington DC, January 16, 2014 — The Young Americas Business Trust (YABT) and the Organization of American States (OAS) are pleased to announce that 1,515 environmental teams from the 34 member states of the OAS have taken up the four challenges of the sixth edition of the Eco-Challenge; of which 310 projects applied for the Colombian Eco-Challenge Award and 263 for the Central American Eco-Challenge Award.

Over the past weeks, YABT staff members have contacted individually all registered teams to assist participants in developing their business plans and other requirements.

Moreover, a group of nearly 500 international judges from both the public and private sectors will evaluate their business plans, market study among other requirements in order to select the best 18 teams that are distributed according to the various subcategories within the Eco-Challenge :

• Three finalists for the Colombian Eco-Challenge Award
• Three finalists for the Central American Eco-Challenge Award
• Twelve finalists for the Hemispheric Eco-Challenge Awards

YABT and partners will announce finalists on March 6 through our official websites and social networks. A member of each of the finalists will be offered a full scholarship to travel to Panama City and participate in the finals of the Eco-Challenge / TIC Americas.

During the finals, all finalists will have access to training opportunities, take part in business discussions and workshops, participate in leadership sessions, and network with the business ecosystem of the City of Knowledge in Panama.

YABT wants to extend special thanks to our partner, PepsiCo, and our regional partners, the Central American Bottling Corporation and Postobón, for making this competition a reality for sixth consecutive time.

About the Eco-Challenge: In 2009, PepsiCo and YABT partnered to create the Eco-Challenge, a category of awards within TIC Americas, focused on innovative projects that offer creative solutions to environmental problems. In 2013, cbc and YABT partnered to create the regional Eco-Challenge aimed at supporting Young Central Americans. In 2014, Postobón joined efforts to have a greater impact in Colombia.

From 2009 to 2015, registrations have gone up from 300 teams annually to 1,515 teams for the Eco-Challenge category within TIC Americas. This significant increase demonstrates the growing involvement of the Americas youth in designing innovative solutions to environmental issues.

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