Yesterday, the European Business Angel Network (www.eban.org) celebrated its 20th anniversary. Christian Saublens, former Director of EURADA and co-founder of EBAN: “In 1995 I had a phone call from a French colleague asking about ‘business angels’. After that call, we had a presentation from a British colleague in our next annual conference AGORADA. The interest was so high that the speaker gathered over 20 business cards. We decided to create a working group inside of EURADA that latter spin off in EBAN”.

Since 1999, EBAN has aided growth of the early stages of investment and entrepreneurial ecosystem in Europe and beyond. Through numerous programs, initiatives and events, EBAN has built a more integrated innovation value chain that is allowing governments and innovators to be closer together.

During the 90s, the European Commission launched a call of €65,000 to support the creation of national networks, the organisation of workshop to make the concept well-known. One of the main beneficiaries of that grant was EBAN and that was the moment when the network of Business Angels was created
EURADA asked the European Commission to prepare and Awareness raising campaign. That was a support given by the European Commission in the start of EBAN; after that initial project, EBAN gathered funds from a Leonardo project to develop materials to train and professionalise Business Angels.

Ms. Schreiber, Director for COSME programme and SME Policy: “The European Commission recognises the important role of business angels providing not only financial resources but mentoring and support to entrepreneurs”. The Commission has published a guide about how to use structural funds to support business angels in cooperation with EBAN (https://publications.europa.eu/…/cf4dcc4d-cfc4-11e5-a4b5-01…) and has programmes to co-invest with business angels in the Innovation-Fin programme.