A CROWDFUNDING campaign to help Scotland become “the most entrepreneurial society in the world” by 2030 has smashed its target.

Entrepreneurial Scotland has raised £140,000 from the drive, nearly twice the original £75,000 that it set out to achieve when it launched #FundTheFuture initiative in March.

The funds will be used to increase the number of people who undertake the organisation’s programmes. These include the Saltire Scholar programme, which provides university students with the opportunity to spend the penultimate year of study an internship in Scotland or overseas.

The cash raised will also be used to create a bursary scheme to fund its executive leadership programme. This will have a particular emphasis on supporting access for social entrepreneurs, whose vision and leadership benefits society.

The Entrepreneurial Scotland Foundation has set a target of supporting 2,000 Saltire Scholars and 1,000 leaders by 2030. The monies raised by the #FundTheFuture campaign will contribute towards achieve that goal.

Sara Cook, director for impact at Entrepreneurial Scotland, said the organisation had been “overwhelmed” by the generosity and support in response to the crowdfunding appeal.

She said: “When we set out at the start of the campaign, we really didn’t know what was possible and we believed that a target of £75,000 was an ambitious goal. This whole process has just shown us the depth of support within our network, and the value of the work we do in terms of the people, businesses and communities who feel that positive impact.

“As a result of these donations, the Entrepreneurial Scotland team can continue to deliver and scale this impact. Ensuring greater numbers of participants in our learning programmes brings us closer to our mission of positioning Scotland as the most entrepreneurial society in the world

“We are delighted to be able to tell all participants in our 2021/2022 programmes that they have belief and backing of others. This sense of pride and community that this will foster will prove vital.”

Sandy Kennedy, chief executive of Entrepreneurial Scotland, added: “These hugely-supportive comments reflect the overwhelming goodwill of the entrepreneurial community we serve.

“We have been deeply humbled by such generosity and thank everyone who has contributed. So many people answered the call to help us carry on creating entrepreneurial leaders and we are profoundly grateful.”