Enterprise Development and Market Competitiveness (EDMC) is a five-year USAID funded project, launched in October 2011.

The goal of the project is to ensure sustainable economic growth in Armenia through supporting the development of small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs), increasing employment, promoting export and income growth.

This is being done through four main components and a few other tools at hand.

EDMC’s Value Chain Competitiveness Component works to enhance SME competitiveness and productivity through the introduction of new technologies and innovation, development of managerial skills and by helping companies to expand existing markets and reach new ones.

The mission of the Workforce and Entrepreneurship Development Component is to enhance the competitiveness of Armenia’s workforce. The focus is on defining and effectively addressing labor supply and demand shortfalls that limit enterprise competitiveness. The component’s approach is that the supply and demand of and for a qualified workforce should be private sector driven.

As a key aspect of the project’s Workforce and Entrepreneurship Development Component approach, USAID/EDMC is also offering the innovative CEED Top Class Program.  Top Class is an innovative training and mentorship program for fast-growing SMEs and their management teams which encourages entrepreneurship by providing entrepreneurs and their executive teams the know-how and networks they need to accelerate the growth of their businesses and to promote an entrepreneurial culture in the broader society.

The Business Environment Improvement Component aims to improve Armenia’s business enabling environment by developing draft amendments to laws and regulations, proposals to streamline applicable procedures, and solutions to enhance the capacities of public institutions governing the markets in the four support sectors.

EDMC’s Access to Finance Component partners with several Armenian commercial banks to help improve their services to SMEs that operate in the four support sectors. Tailored technical assistance is provided to partner banks that includes development of new services to address sector financing gaps, risk management, credit scoring, outreach, loan underwriting and approval systems.

As a key complementary aspect of its Access to Finance approach, the project is sponsoring and facilitating tight linkages with the Armenia branch of the SEAF Caucasus Growth Fund in order to build out access to equity financing resources for more progressive SMEs.

Supplementing the project’s work in these areas, EDMC is employing a targeted grants fund to jumpstart institution-building progress in the project’s key value chain support areas.

Finally, all these activities are being done targeting four supported sectors – High Technologies, Pharmaceuticals / Biotechnologies, Food Processing (fruits, vegetables, and herbs), and Hospitality.