Manizales-Mas: Cree, Crea, Crece - Believe, Create, and Grow
The purpose of the Manizales-Mas case is to show the inner workings of the first three years of a comprehensive economic development project that uses entrepreneurship-extraordinary company growth -as the driving wedge. The BEEP project started in 2010 with a contact by the general director, Ana Maria Gonzales, of the Luker Foundation, a non-profit foundation established by the local Restrepo family that owns Casa Luker, which had focused on education promotion since its inception in 1995. Gonzales approached Babson and BEEP, who together conducted a two-month pilot. Between 2010 and 2012 Gonzales worked hard to coalesce a group of funders and stakeholders to back the project, both financially and in terms of non-financial involvement. Having created a consensus among 11 local organizations, Gonzales then negotiated the project with Babson, yielding numerous conflicts and misunderstandings. Marcela Escobar was hired in late 2011 as project team leader, and conducted the project from that time onward, during Phases 2-3. The case takes place as Phase 3 is transitioning to Phase 4, with several acute problems, such as conflict among the stakeholders and an important staff member, the director of communications, who has just announced her resignation.