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Enterprise

Elumelu to give startups capital, mentorship

Tony Elumelu
Nigerian philanthropist Tony Elumelu. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Entrepreneurs and individuals with scalable business ideas have another chance to apply for mentorship and seed capital opportunity from the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF).

Run by Nigerian philanthropist Tony Elumelu, the foundation has opened its application portal for African entrepreneurs for two months ending March 1.

Selected enterpreneurs get a 12-week online training on managing enterprises, mentorship on transforming business at its early stages, a seed capital of Sh500,000 ($5,000) and networking opportunities.

This is the sixth edition of the TEF’s 10-year $100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor and fund 10,000 African entrepreneurs by 2024.

“The transformation of Africa begins with empowering our young African entrepreneurs,” said TEF chief executive Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu at the launch of the 2020 cycle.

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Applicants must be above 18 years, operate businesses between idea stage and three years, their enterprises be for profit and based in Africa.

Since being established in 2015, the TEF has supported more than 200 entrepreneurs in Kenya.

“We encourage all startup African entrepreneurs across the 54 African countries to apply for the programme, as we continue to empower the very best ideas that will create the much needed employment and revenue on the continent,” said Ms Ugochukwu.

The TEF selects 1,000 entrepreneurs based on idea viability, including marketability, entrepreneur’s financial understanding as well as leadership and demonstrable entrepreneurial skills.

The programme is part of TEF’s plan to empower 10,000 entrepreneurs in 10 years, with the goal of creating millions of jobs and new revenue on the continent.

It seeks to implement Mr Elumelu’s Africapitalism philosophy, which positions the private sector as the catalyst for African economic transformation, and an investment approach that values the creation of both social and economic wealth.

In commemoration of its 10th year anniversary, the Foundation plans to announce further enhancements to the programme, providing additional benefits to Africa’s rapidly growing youth demographic. The changes in the 2020 TEF plan emphasise a personalised entrepreneurship journey for every applicant and opening the platform to ensure a higher number of people are trained.

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