The Foundation Center Entrepreneurship and Executive Development in Romania – CEED ROMANIA is a nongovernmental, non-profit and apolitical organization. CEED ROMANIA is part of an international network of similar centers.
CEED ROMANIA strives for economic and social development through human capital development, promotion of economic education and of entrepreneurship.
CEED ROMANIA facilitates non-discriminatory access of all citizens to the know-how and the contacts they need to help create jobs and increase employment, thus increasing economic prosperity. Building a community of entrepreneurs is paramount in our approach.
CEED ROMANIA promotes development of human capital and economic culture through training programs tailored to the individual needs of different social groups, enhanced by professional support through counseling, mentoring and networking.
To promote entrepreneurship, CEED ROMANIA provides the know-how needed by existing and potential entrepreneurs, through its programs aimed to initiate and accelerate business development and thtrough creation of communities of entrepreneurs, mentors, potential partners and donors.
The holistic combination of market connections, community involvement, capacity building and access to capital set CEED apart.
SEAF is an investment management group that provides growth capital and business assistance to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in emerging and transition markets underserved by traditional sources of capital. Through our network of investment funds around the world, we invest in entrepreneurs seeking to build successful businesses, hoping to realize both returns to our investors and strong development impact in local communities.
With over 20 years of experience in SME investing, +500 SME investments and 1000 technical assistance interventions in frontier and emerging market SMEs, SEAF is intimately aware of the challenges faced by entrepreneurs in the management of their businesses. SEAF found that entrepreneurs were generally not as equipped to deal with rapid business growth. They frequently lacked knowledge and tools to assess new markets and struggled to gain access to capital. Entrepreneurs also lacked the right networks with other entrepreneurs who had experience entering regional and international markets bringing their businesses to scale. CEED was created to address these challenges by enlisting successful entrepreneurs to mentor those looking to grow their businesses. CEED was developed using a peer to peer model where entrepreneurs would share their experiences, help others overcome challenges, and develop trust in others in the network.
Executive Director, CEED Romania
Alexandra Mararu started working with CEED Romania in March 2015, as an expert in two major project developed by CEED at that time.
Since August 2016 she is the executive director of CEED Romania, responsible with management of all resources and projects of the Foundation.
From January 2010 Alexandra worked at IOCC Romania gaining experience in implementing projects financed by European Union and from US founds. This experience helped Alexandra to experience new work environments working in a multicultural organization. From August 2014 till March 2015 she was the National Director of IOCC Romania where she gained experience in NGO management.
Alexandra has experience in implementation of 7 major donor-funded projects, including projects targeting vulnerable groups and promotion of SME start-up and development.
Alexandra holds an University degree from the Foreign Languages Faculty of the Spiru Haret University, a Master degree in Project management from The Bucharest University of Economic Studies and a Master degree from University Politehnica of Bucharest in Aeronautical management.
Deputy Director, CEED Romania
Cristina Manescu had lead CEED Romania during May 2006 until August 2016 as Executive Director, since August 2016 she is the Deputy Director of CEED Romania, which brought extensive knowledge and experience to this position.
She has started business training and consulting activities in 1991, with the first programme for promotion of SMEs established in Romania by UNDP.
Since then, she gained a wide experience in various areas of SME development, both in Romania and abroad. She provided business consulting, prepared business plans, feasibility studies and documentation to obtain financing, trained hundreds of entrepreneurs, consultants, NGO members, designed, raised funds for, and implemented various SME development projects both in Romania and abroad, contributed to establishment of new SME support organizations and launching of new financing schemes for SME.
She also trained a variety of types of clients in areas related to Project design & Project Management and EU Structural Funds.
Cristina worked as a national and international consultant for UNDP, UNIDO, UNOPS, ITC in 10 countries from Central and Eastern Europe, Caspian Sea area and Central Asia, and in various projects funded by UNDP, World Bank, USAID and EU.
She has served as the Task Manager of the Delegation of the European Commission in Bucharest, in charge with SMEs and the business environment, coordinating the whole portfolio of ongoing and pipeline projects for SMEs.
Cristina is a member of TEAM EUROPE, a network of independent trainers and speakers established by Delegation of the European Commission.
Cristina Manescu holds an University degree from the Cybernetics Faculty of the Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest, a Master of Business Administration from Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers – CNAM Paris, and a Master degree from The National Institute for Economic Development, Bucharest.
This post is also available in Română.