High-Growth Entrepreneur or Gazelle Program

High-growth Entrepreneurs or Gazelles have been identified as the catalyst for local, regional, national and global economic development.

Studies have shown in the US for example that such firms add more employment and economic growth than more stable larger public companies. Also known as “Hidden Champions”, the High-Growth and Gazelle Program is focused on identifying a number of young innovative organisations that have the potential to grow quickly.

The companies targeted will have commenced with a TO of over $100,000 and have shown the potential to increase sales by 40% per annum.

An important criterion will be the entrepreneur’s willingness to learn.

The key to the program is not to energise these firms and their leaders through adding more ideas but to facilitate their leadership development and management skills.

In essence teaching these fast moving entrepreneurs how to innovate per se is not necessary but some of the processes around innovation management will be essential. Leadership and management skills have been identified by Enterprise Connect as a significant area of entrepreneurial venture weakness that needs addressing.

There are three key stages in our process:


Stage 1 – Identify 8 potential gazelles using publicly available data and industry and government experts.

Stage 2 – Seek out the gazelles support and commitment for a targeted program around leadership and management.

Stage 3 – Customise a program around management best-practice and the needs of the nominated participants (generally the owner/entrepreneur or designated CEO). It is anticipated that gazelles will meet eight times per year for half day workshops (similar to the Innovative Champion Program). Four of these workshops will be constructed around the group’s own identified needs. The other four workshops will be conducted in conjunction with the Innovative Champion Program (expert workshops conducted around innovative management processes). Note: this has the added benefit of bringing all 38 participants together for a greater networking of ideas.

The High-Growth Entrepreneur or Gazelle Program aims to harness the benefits of a strong cohesive group. The aim is to enhance their development and growth through access to government programs and through facilitating support from business angels, venture capitalists and identified local financial support. It is anticipated that this program will commence in August 2012.