The programme is a 10-year, $100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor and fund 10,000 African entrepreneurs.
Tony Elumelu Foundation, the leading African-funded and founded philanthropy committed to empowering African entrepreneurs, is now accepting applications for the 2019 cohort of the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme.
The programme is a 10-year, $100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor and fund 10,000 African entrepreneurs. The programme’s objective is to generate at least 1,000,000 new jobs and create at least $10 billion in new business revenue across Africa.
Now in its 5th year, the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme has empowered 4,470 entrepreneurs, using a bespoke and robust selection, training and implementation process to create visible and sustainable impact across all 54 African countries.
In 2018, over 2,210 Ugandans entrepreneurs applied for the program, ranking Uganda the third highest after Nigeria and Kenya in submissions. Over 126 Ugandan applicants were successful and received in the $5000 seed capital in 2018. Since inception over 300 Ugandan entrepreneurs have benefited from the program.
Outstanding African entrepreneurs running existing start-ups with high growth potential and aspiring business owners with transformative ideas are invited to apply. According to a statement from TEF, the foundation is particularly looking to grow representation from French, Arabic and Portuguese speakers, as well as female entrepreneurs.
Inspired by Tony Elumelu’s economic philosophy of Africapitalism and his vision to institutionalise luck and democratise opportunity for a new generation of African entrepreneurs, the Foundation has implemented one of the most ambitious entrepreneurship programmes globally.
Selected entrepreneurs from previous years have transformed their businesses and their communities after gaining from the Programme’s 7 pillars: $5,000 in seed capital; business development training; one-on-one mentoring; access to TEFConnect; pan-African meetups; TEF network membership; and participation at the annual TEF Entrepreneurship Forum, the largest convening of the African entrepreneurship ecosystem.
Founder and UBA Chairperson, Tony O. Elumelu, CON, stated: “The private sector must be the core driver of Africa's economic transformation, but this sector cannot attain its full potential if entrepreneurs are left behind."
He added: “We call on all stakeholders – policymakers, business leaders and development agencies – to actively commit to creating a better future for our young Africans who have demonstrated intellect, skill, and passion, to empower them to succeed because their success is Africa's success. The TEF Entrepreneurship Programme is by far the most impactful project of my life and represents my commitment to transforming Africa through entrepreneurship".
Parminder Vir, CEO, Tony Elumelu Foundation, said: “Our entrepreneurs illustrate the Foundation’s commitment to transform the African economy, by building on the intelligence, skills and resourcefulness of Africans. I encourage all ambitious young Africans to take advantage of this unique opportunity”.
The Foundation, which has recently hosted President Macron of France, President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya and President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana in dynamic interactive sessions with young African entrepreneurs, is committed to supporting the entire entrepreneurship ecosystem – from the entrepreneurs themselves, governments who must provide enabling environments, to capital, advice and most importantly access and networks.
The TEF Entrepreneurship Programme is open to citizens and legal residents of all African countries, who run for-profit businesses based in Africa that are no older than three years. The deadline for applications submission is March 1, 2019.
Applications will be judged based on criteria including: feasibility, scalability and potential for growth of the product/service; market opportunity for the idea/business; financial understanding, leadership potential and entrepreneurial skills.
Applicants can apply on TEFConnect - www.tefconnect.com - the largest digital networking platform for African entrepreneurs.