The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) is going to give out USD 5 K each to 100,000 African entrepreneurs in the next 10 years. It’s the latest development in its drive to transform the continent through entrepreneurship.
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), has partnered the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) — Africa’s leading philanthropy committed to empowering entrepreneurs — to train, mentor and financially support 100,000 young entrepreneurs in Africa over 10 years towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the African Union’s Agenda 2063.
The TEF-UNDP Sahel Youth Entrepreneurship Programme, is expected to mobilise support for businesses, aims to generate millions of new jobs and contribute at least USD 10 Bn in new annual revenues across Africa.
This was announced yesterday, at the 12th Extraordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union (AU), where TEF Founder, Tony Elumelu and UNDP Regional Director for Africa, Ahunna Eziakonwa joined African Presidents at the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Business Forum, where the agreement was signed.
The partnership will target young Africans in under-served communities, starting with the Sahel, given the region’s opportunity as the youngest population in the world with 194 million people under 25 years of age (64.5 percent of the total population).
The TEF-UNDP Sahel Youth Entrepreneurship Programme will be implemented through TEF’s flagship Entrepreneurship Programme, which has already benefited 7,520 local entrepreneurs across 54 African countries in just five years of existence. Similarly, the programme builds on UNDP’s YouthConnekt initiative.
The aim is to increase job creation through dynamic entrepreneurship and create sustainable economic growth that anchors the development of communities and states.
Through the new UNDP-TEF initiative, USD 5 K in non-refundable seed capital will be provided to each of the selected applicants, as well as access to mentors, a three-month intensive business training, and networking opportunities. Successful applicants will also link up with over 3,000 beneficiaries that make up the 2019 cohort of the TEF Entrepreneurship programme.
Some 5,500 young African entrepreneurs will be shortlisted initially and they will all participate in the three-month business training, after which the list will be whittled down to a final 2,000 who will then join forces with the previous TEF cohort, all of whom will be eligible for seed funding.