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Elumelu Foundation opens $100m funding ‘to grow startups’

Elumelu Foundation opens $100m funding ‘to grow startups’
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The Tony Elumelu Foundation backed by Mr Tony Elumelu, the Nigerian banker and promoter of Africapitalism has opened entries for a $100 million funding programme to support startups across Africa.
The $100 million programme, announced at the Tony Elumelu Foundation headquarters in Lagos, Nigeria, on December 1st 2014, will identify and support 1,000 entrepreneurs from across the continent each year over the next decade.
The 10,000 start-ups and young businesses selected from across Africa will ultimately create one million new jobs and add $10 billion in annual revenues to Africa’s economy, according to the Foundation.
Entries have now open for the annual programme of training, funding and mentoring, designed to empower the next generation of African entrepreneurs through its application portal http://www.tonyelumelufoundation.org/teep
At the launch, Tony O. Elumelu CON, the founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, spoke of his personal commitment to empowering African entrepreneurship, saying, “This programme is far more than a funding initiative or networking opportunity. It is an act of faith in our entrepreneurs and our young people to transform our continent; to be the engine for the creation of both economic and social wealth, putting into practice what I have called Africapitalism.”
Commenting on the initiative, Parminder Vir, Director of Entrepreneurship, The Tony Elumelu Foundation says that “since the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme was announced, we have been enthused by the level of interest and excitement from entrepreneurs across Africa. We are looking forward to reviewing the entries and identifying the first cohort of the continent’s next generation of business leaders.”
The entrepreneurship programme opened its application portal for entries at 12:01am WAT on January 1st 2015 and will continue to accept applications until midnight WAT on March 1st 2015.
In order to submit an application, entrepreneurs must complete the online application form with questions on their background, experience and business idea, plans for growth and proposed pan-African impact.
The $100 million programme, announced at the Tony Elumelu Foundation headquarters in Lagos, Nigeria, on December 1st 2014, will identify and support 1,000 entrepreneurs from across the continent each year over the next decade. The 10,000 start-ups and young businesses selected from across Africa will ultimately create one million new jobs and add $10 billion in annual revenues to Africa’s economy.
The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme is open to citizens and legal residents of all 54 African countries. Applications can be made by any for-profit business based in Africa in existence for less than three years, including new business ideas.  The application portal is available in English, French and Portuguese and applications will be accepted in these three languages.
Applications for the programme close on March 1st 2015 when they will be reviewed by the Selection Committee, whose members include:
  • Ory Okolloh, Director of Investments, Omidyar Network’s Government
  • Transparency Initiative in Africa
  • Amadou Hott, CEO, Senegal’s Sovereign Wealth Fund
  • Ayodeji Adewunmi, CEO and Co-Founder, Jobberman
  • Dr Vera Songwe, Country Director, World Bank Group for Senegal, Cape Verde,
  • Gambia, Guinea-Bissau and Mauritania
  • Opunimi Akinkugbe, CEO, Bestman Games Ltd
  • Dr Ndubuisi Ekekwe, Founder, First Atlantic Semi-Conductors & Microelectronics
  • Sam Nwanze, Chief Investment Officer, Heirs Holdings
  • Monica Musonda, CEO, Java Food in Zambia
  • Angelle Kwemo, Managing Director & CEO, Rimsom Strategies
  • Mariéme Jamme, CEO, Spotone Global Solutions
  • Dr Wiebe Boer, CEO, The Tony Elumelu Foundation
The first cohort of successful applicants from across Africa will be announced on March 22nd, 2015. The 1,000 selected applicants will continue through the programme cycle for the course of the year. This includes an intensive online training curriculum and participation in an entrepreneurship boot camp.
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