Africa’s 1,000 Most Promising Startups To Benefit from $100m Funding from Tony Elumelu Foundation
Tony Elumelu Foundation has launched the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Program that is set to avail $100m funding to pan-African startups. The program will not only involve funding, but also extend to training and mentorship opportunity for the young African entrepreneurs.
“The opportunity and challenge in Africa is scale – in our people, our resources and horizons. In my business and philanthropic journeys, I have always sought ways to help inspire a generation across our continent. This program brings together my own entrepreneurial experience and my fundamental belief that entrepreneurs (women and men across Africa) will lead Africa’s development and transform our futures,” said Tony O. Elumelu, the CON and Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation.
It is said that the program will give startup entrepreneurs access to structured multi-year access to funding, knowledge and mentoring opportunity at scales that are unprecedented in Africa. The program is set to identify and nurture an initial 10,000 startups from across the continent over the next 10 years; with the goal of creating 1,000,000 new jobs and $10 billion annual revenue.
Parminder Vir, the Director of Entrepreneurship at the Tony Elumelu Foundation said, “Whether you’re in Lagos, Accra, Johannesburg, Nairobi or Dakar, Africa is buzzing with entrepreneurs who need a platform that enables them to take their business or idea to the next level. The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Program has been designed to provide that mechanism.”
A selection committee has been set up to pick 1,000 of Africa’s most promising startups. Members of the selection committee include:
- Ory Okolloh – Director of Investments at the Omidyar Network.
- Dr Ayodeji Adewunmi – CEO and Co-Founder of Jobberman.
- Dr Vera Songwe – Country Director at the World Bank Group for Cape Verde, Senegal, Mauritania, Gambia and Guinea-Bissau.
- Opunimi Akinkugbe – CEO of pan-African board game company Bestman Games Ltd.
- Dr Ndubuisi Ekekwe – Founder of technology company First Atlantic Semi-Conductors & Microelectronics.
- Sam Nwanze – Chief Investment Officer at Heirs Holdings.
- Monica Musonda – CEO of Java Food in Zambia.
- Dr Wiebe Boer – CEO of the Tony Elumelu Foundation.
Applicants who successfully make it into the program will take part in a comprehensive program that will empower them with relevant skills that are essential for building a successful business. Successful applicant will among other things get seed funding, a tailor-made 3months long business skills training course, mentorship, attend an entrepreneurship ‘boot camp’, participate in the annual Elumelu Entrepreneurship Forum and get Alumni Network membership among other things.
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