The Global Entrepreneurship Education Summit (GEES) has quickly become one of the foremost events fostering entrepreneurship and innovation in education. GEES’ partnership with Santander, a leading global banking group renowned for their commitment to nurturing entrepreneurial talent and supporting innovation, is now in its second year. This collaboration showcases the bank’s unwavering dedication to contributing to the burgeoning entrepreneurial ecosystem.

In a recent interview, Santander’s representatives shared their views about the importance of GEES, the future of entrepreneurship education, and the crucial skills students need to learn to succeed as entrepreneurs.

GEES: An Incubator for Aspiring Entrepreneurs

Santander views GEES as an essential event fostering a culture of entrepreneurship education. By providing a vibrant platform where professors, lecturers, representatives of local communities and other groups interested in entrepreneurship education can learn, network, and be inspired, GEES aligns perfectly with Santander’s vision of nurturing talent and promoting entrepreneurial skills. The bank believes that the knowledge, insights, and connections participants acquire at GEES can be transformative, empowering them to better teach young entrepreneurs to launch their own successful ventures.

Marcos Soares Ribeiro and Duarte Rodrigues talking with representatives from Portuguese universities about entrepreneurship and innovation activities.

The Takeaways from GEES

Santander emphasizes that GEES participants should focus on extracting as much learning as possible from the event. Participants can glean insights from industry experts, successful entrepreneurs, and fellow aspiring entrepreneurship educators through various sessions and workshops. They also have the opportunity to expand their network, connecting with like-minded individuals from the industry. The bank hopes that participants will leave GEES equipped with the confidence, knowledge, and resources needed to implement innovative ideas at their own organizations.

Future of Entrepreneurship Education

Santander is optimistic about the future of entrepreneurship education and its role in fostering economic growth and innovation. They foresee a future where entrepreneurship education is steeped in experiential learning, practical skills development, and interdisciplinary collaboration. Emerging technologies like AI and blockchain are expected to play a significant role, enabling aspiring entrepreneurs to navigate the ever-evolving business landscape.

Santander also believes that entrepreneurship will become more inclusive and diverse and emphasizes the importance of social and sustainable entrepreneurship in addressing global challenges. The bank sees entrepreneurship education as a key driver of innovation, adaptability, and resilience, contributing significantly to global economic prosperity.

Santander’s Role in Fostering Innovation

Marcos Soares Ribeiro, Executive Board Member Fundação Santander Portugal, opening GEES 2022

As a key player in promoting innovation, Santander collaborates with universities and organizations to support entrepreneurship programs, incubators, and accelerators. The bank facilitates access to funding, networking opportunities, and industry collaborations, providing an ecosystem conducive for innovation.

Santander also invests significantly in research and development, driving innovation in the financial industry and beyond. The bank’s multifaceted approach showcases its commitment to fostering a culture of entrepreneurship and supporting innovators at all stages of their journey.

Essential Entrepreneurial Skills

When asked about the most important skills that students need to learn for entrepreneurship, Santander highlighted several areas. Creativity and innovation, adaptability and resilience, communication and networking, and problem-solving and critical thinking were among the top priorities. Financial literacy, leadership and teamwork, as well as sales and marketing were also mentioned as crucial skillsets for budding entrepreneurs.

As the main sponsor of GEES, Santander is at the forefront of encouraging a new generation of entrepreneurship educators. The bank’s support for GEES showcases its belief in the transformative power of entrepreneurship education and its commitment to fostering innovation. With GEES and Santander, the future of entrepreneurship looks promising indeed.


Santander has also shared some creative resources to read/listen/watch more about innovation and entrepreneurship for GEES participants:

  • Book “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries, A renowned guide on building startups, emphasizing the lean methodology, rapid experimentation, and continuous innovation.
  • Podcast “How I Built This” by Guy Raz, Inspiring interviews with successful entrepreneurs, delving into their journey, challenges, and insights on building iconic companies.
  • TED Talk “The Power of Vulnerability” by Brené Brown, A thought-provoking talk highlighting the importance of vulnerability and embracing failure as essential elements of entrepreneurship.
  • Online Course “Entrepreneurship 101: Who is your customer?” by Stanford Online, A comprehensive course exploring customer-centric approaches to entrepreneurship, emphasizing the importance of understanding and serving target markets.
  • Learning room from Santander Becas, thousands of free books and resources.
  • Santander X, our Entrepreneurship platform.


Get ready for the Global Entrepreneurship Education Summit on July 26-27(28)!

If, for some reason, you haven’t registered yet, you can still secure your place here