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An Old Favorite

2,300 years after its culture dominated the world, Greece is still very open for business.

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This story appears in the August 1999 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Long before the 2004 Olympics come to town, the entrepreneurial potential in is shining brighter than a gold medal. It's easy to understand why--the cradle of former civilizations is dashing toward the new millennium at a record-setting pace.

Quickening the strides are a number of factors. Among them: Greece has inflation under control, at 3.5 percent, for the first time in two decades; it's lining up to join the European Monetary Union in two years and the Athens Stock Exchange performed as well as others in the world last year. Another catalyst is the Hellenic Center for Investment (ELKE), a and Greek government-funded nonprofit organization designed to help bring in new business to serve the nation's 10.6 million residents and the rest of the Mediterranean and North African regions. Empowered to promote applications for government grants and counsel potential investors, ELKE is winning kudos for greasing its country's entrepreneurial wheels.

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