The programme is billed as an "intensive leadership development opportunity for Scotland’s most ambitious and entrepreneurially-minded individuals". It is led by Entrepreneurial Scotland in partnership with Babson College in Boston, in the US.
The six-month programme is designed to immerse participants, who are known as Saltire Fellows, in entrepreneurial thinking and strategic leadership and provide them with the skills to scale a business and gain an understanding of global business.
The new 2017/18 programme now includes a further two weeks of residential learning in Scotland, led by Strathclyde Business School at the University of Strathclyde, which is home to the Hunter Centre of Entrepreneurship, the Strathclyde Entrepreneurial Network and Entrepreneurial Scotland.
More than 100 people are said to have already registered interest for the 2017-18 Fellowship programme. The Diageo Learning for Life programme will be funding a place for a candidate from within the licensed trade in Scotland.
Set up in 2010, the Saltire Fellowship has established a strong track record. Over six consecutive years, 107 individuals have successfully completed the rigorous programme, creating 26 enterprises, more than 280 jobs and contributing an estimated £48 million to Scotland’s economy.
Chief executive Sandy Kennedy said: "The current landscape is changing both nationally and internationally. This is reason, more than ever, to have people working in our businesses that have a global outlook, a first class network and the knowledge and confidence to scale companies in Scotland and ultimately give Scotland a competitive edge."
Les Charm, senior lecturer of entrepreneurship at Babson College, said: "At Babson we make you think big and this programme is designed to change people’s lives by helping them acquire new skills and mind steps in order that they and their companies move forward."