13:13 | 15.04.15 | Articles | exclusive 70601

VimpelCom wants to help young people build their future

Interview of Head of Corporate Communications Department for CIS Business Unit, VimpelCom Group, Galina Kurganova to Itel.am.

- A few days ago, “Make Your Mark” strategy was presented in Armenia. Please, speak about the concept of the project and its key areas.

- “Make Your Mark” global project was launched in the headquarters of VimpelCom Group in late 2014. The main goal of the project is to help young people build their future. Obviously, young people all over the world will face global challenges -from environmental ones up to growth of the planet’s population. Mobile technologies allow creating technological solutions which enable increasing even the country’s GDP: there is statistics on the directly proportional link between mobile technology penetration and growth of economy. Analyzing the situation, we realized that as a mobile operator represented in 14 countries of the world, we have a very good basis for contributing to the sustainable development, and the program was born as a result.

Of course, it’s good when there are social projects addressing local problems of the society in each country of VimpelCom presence. However, we needed a global topic to bring together all of them in the VimpelCom strategic concept. To this end, a special logotype blending in the colors of VimpelCom in various countries was worked out.

What is the main object of “Make Your Mark”? Indeed, countries vary by a lot of criteria including the level of network penetration and technologies. One doesn’t need to compare the level of development of the society’s technological needs in, say, Italy and Tajikistan, that’s why various areas of the program were established and they imply 3 main stages.

The first stage implies “making your mark” in technologies. The company helps development of network and communication penetration providing internet and computers to the educational institutions, training pupils and students so as they can feel maximum comfortable in the technology field as it’s very hard to do without it in the modern world.

The second stage is education including master classes, workshops, experience exchange among countries, i.e. implementation of projects aimed at enhancing the intellectual potential.

The third and most advanced stage implies creation of technological platforms. As of now, it was only realized in Italy, but I’m sure it’s only the beginning. In Italy, we have established a unique incubator of business ideas where every person can come with his idea and get consultation. He will be told how to realize the idea to the best and develop business from technological viewpoint. Besides, the incubator holds regular presentations of ideas: investors who are interested in a project can at once invest money in it. Now there are several dozens of projects being developed in the business incubator.

- What is the target group of the project?

- First of all, we focus on youth to help them fulfill their potential. At the same time, we concentrate on the society’s needs. The official start of “Make Your Mark” program in Armenia was marked with the launch of “Agro School” project. In fact, a number of very interesting projects in various fields have been implemented in Armenia, including mobile apps contest and computer literacy workshops for teachers of marzes and many other areas.

Thus, there was a good basis for the launch of such global strategy as “Make Your Mark” in Armenia. I think “Agro School” project meets the current needs of the country, apart from other benefits, and it incorporates both mobile technologies and potential of the agriculture development in the country on the whole. I think it’s a good example of socially responsible operator as it invests in development of the technological potential which will then impact the GDP growth in its turn. It’s a classical example of what the program in every country should look like. We suppose each of the countries needs such local projects meeting the society’s needs. Till late 2015, the program will also be presented in each of the 14 countries of VimpelCom presence.

- How long will the project last?

- Undoubtedly, it’s a long-term project. We are now beginning the project of construction of hothouses in Armavir region. Then a mobile app for selling the production we’ll be growing will be launched. Besides, many Beeline projects implemented in Armenia will be adjusted to the strategy which will contribute to their effectiveness.

Aram Araratyan talked to Galina Kurganova