Tag Archives: Tony Elumelu

Calling All Entrepreneurs – Apply Now for Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme 2018

Are you an entrepreneur? In other words, do you spend time trying to provide a solution to a problem in the market? The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme – TEEP  is for you!. Stand a chance to become the next grand African entrepreneur.

The annual programme offers 10,000 aspiring African Entrepreneurs an opportunity to benefit from $100 million grant to create 1,000,000 jobs and contribute $10 billion in annual revenues to Africa’s economy over the next 10 years.


Application Period: Interested entrepreneurs will be able to submit their applications to join the programme as from 1st January 2018 until Midnight WAT on March 1, 2018.

Opportunity is open to: All citizens (18 and above) and legal residents of all African countries with businesses that operate in Africa.

About Entrepreneurship Programme: Nigerian billionaire investor and philanthropist Tony Elumelu has committed $100 million to create 10,000 entrepreneurs across Africa over the next 10 years. Elumelu made the commitment on Monday during a press conference in Lagos to announce the launch of The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme (TEEP). The programme has run successfully since 2015 and has given upcoming entrepreneurs a great start.

The multi-year programme comes with training, funding, and mentoring. It’s designed to empower the next generation of African entrepreneurs.

Date Founded: 2015

Programme: Funding for African Entrepreneurs

Slots Available: 1,000 positions available annually for 10 years

Value of Programme: The 1,000 start-ups selected from a pool of applicants across Africa will participate in a comprehensive programme which will include;

  • A customised 12-week business skills training course
  • Start-Up Enterprise Toolkit
  • Mentoring
  • Resource Library
  • 2-Day Boot Camp
  • Seed Capital Funding
  • Elumelu Forum
  • Alumni Network

Duration of Programme: The programme will identify and help grow 10,000 start-ups and young businesses from across Africa over the next 10 years. These businesses will in turn create 1,000,000 new jobs and contribute $10 billion in annual revenues to Africa’s economy.

How to Apply: All applications must be submitted online through the TEEP Portal. Answer a series of mandatory questions and upload additional documents and identification materials. You will receive a confirmation email within 1 working day of submission.

More details about the program, including eligibility and the application and selection processes are available on the Tony Elumelu Foundation website at: www.tonyelumelufoundation.org/TEEP.

Additional note:

  • In 2017, TEEP empowered 1,000 African entrepreneurs, selected from over 20,000 applicants, with start-up investment, active mentoring, business training, an entrepreneurship boot camp and regional networking across Africa.
  • Entrepreneurs, with an average age range of 21-40, from 51 African countries completed the programme and received $5,000 in seed capital for their start-up businesses.
  • The Tony Elumelu Foundation invested a total of $4,860,000, including $1,405,000 in agriculture; $410,000 in education and training; and $365,000 in manufacturing.  The sector-agnostic programme funded start-ups across a further 20 industries, all based in Africa.

Entrepreneur-Led Development: A new model for Africa by Tony Elumelu

Tony Elumelu scholarship

Too many policymakers think in terms of traditional aid when they think of support for Africa and the developing world.  I think of Shadi Sabeh.  Shadi is a young man from Sokoto in northern Nigeria – a region currently struggling with a lack of opportunity and economic engagement, especially for the youth. Shadi might well have become mired in frustration, but instead leveraged his entrepreneurial drive to start an education business in Sokoto that already employs over 100 people.

As the recipient of the Tony and Awele Elumelu Prize for Economics from Usman Dan Fodiyo University, Sokoto, Nigeria, I took him with me this week as my guest to a White House event hosted by President Obama, and to a lecture I delivered on ‘Entrepreneur Led Development:  A New Development Model for Africa’ at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business. In so doing, he served as a model for the most promising approach for promoting growth in Africa and creating stability and security everywhere.

What Shadi’s story tells us is simple: Entrepreneurship is the most effective way to establish true prosperity. Only entrepreneurship can create sustainable wealth – the wealth that comes from employment and ownership, and that results in thriving markets and a healthy society.

Only entrepreneurship can create opportunity where none seemingly exists.

To understand why this is so critical, consider: By 2020, 122 million Africans will enter the labour force. The number of new jobs that must be created to accommodate this demographic explosion is enormous. Added to this are tens of millions currently unemployed or underemployed, making the human and economic consequences nearly too large to imagine if job creation is not seen as a priority.

This demographic explosion can spell an economic boom or doom for the continent. Traditional aid and traditional extraction focused investment cannot provide employment for the millions of young Africans entering the job market every year – any more than they can provide for the continent’s massive needs for reliable power generation, housing, transportation and financial services infrastructure.  Entrepreneur-led job creation is necessary to overcome these challenges.

This realisation represents a fundamental change. Traditionally, in Western societies, the concept of African development has been linked to foreign aid. Aid-based approaches have much to recommend them – they have improved untold millions of lives across the continent.

But speaking as an African who is grateful for the lifesaving anti-retrovirals that have saved so many of our people, the vaccines, the emergency food assistance and the debt relief provided to my fellow African citizens, I believe that it is the economic opportunity side of the development coin that will have more catalytic impact in driving development on the African continent.

Job creation is at the heart of this process. Each job means the chance to pull a family permanently out of poverty, a wider tax revenue base for African governments, a household that can buy goods and services created by African businesses and greater social stability because minds are constructively engaged. The result is a healthy middle class that drives the growth of infrastructure, housing and financial inclusion. And financial inclusion leads to a safer, more stable world.

Such a private-sector driven transformation is already in progress. African companies like Dangote Cement, South African telecommunications firm MTN and the United Bank for Africa, which I chair, are creating hundreds of thousands of jobs across Africa, working to provide essential services like mobile phones, infrastructure and banking while integrating the continent.

Most of these companies – like others in Africa and around the world – were created by individual African entrepreneurs. If we are to meet the challenge of creating jobs for the millions of Africans entering the workforce every year – and the millions who cannot find work today – we must support today’s entrepreneurs by creating policies that improve the enabling environment, so that millions of these potential job creators can succeed.

I call this idea – that the private sector has a profound role to play in Africa’s development – Africapitalism. Africapitalism means that we cannot leave the business of development up to our governments, donor countries and philanthropic organisations. We must instead rely on and empower African businesses – with entrepreneurship as its driving force.

Africa is rich in entrepreneurial energy and talent. Many African entrepreneurs are already running home-grown businesses and have deep insights into local consumer demand; they can spot unique gaps in the market for specific products and services. These are the people who can fuel Africa’s future, but who often lack the capital, training and support to take their small businesses to a national or regional scale. In Nigeria alone, 95% of start-ups fail in the first year, largely due to regulatory and infrastructure issues. But many more of them can succeed with the right support and the right enabling environment.

I have so much belief in the potential of nascent and budding African entrepreneurs that I have committed $100 million to support them directly. The Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme (TEEP) is designed to identify 1,000 African entrepreneurs every year over the next decade and provide them with much needed training, mentoring, financing, and networking.

The initial reaction to the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme shows the energy behind African entrepreneurship. For the first 1,000 available slots, we had over 20,000 applicants from 54 African countries and territories. The winners represent 52 African countries and territories as well as a multitude of value-adding sectors ranging from agriculture to education to entertainment to technology.

But the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme alone cannot transform Africa. Political leaders, business leaders and philanthropists must embrace entrepreneur-led development on a wide scale. I appreciate the role that President Obama and President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, as well as entrepreneurs and philanthropists like Jeff Skoll, the Omidyars and Richard Branson, have played in supporting entrepreneurship as a development path for Africa.

To those leaders I say, “thank you” – for supporting the transformation of Africa by supporting African entrepreneurs. To the rest I say, “Will you join me?” My commitment to entrepreneurship is unbounded. I count myself among those who believe that five entrepreneurs transformed the U.S. into what it is today – John D. Rockefeller, Cornelius Vanderbilt, Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ford and J.P. Morgan. Now it is Africa’s turn. But I myself can only do so much. Let us work together to support Africa’s entrepreneurs – Shadi Sabeh and millions like him – and secure Africa’s future.


By Tony O. Elumelu


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5 Personal Tips To Build A Successful Business By Entrepreneur Tony Elumelu

Nigerian serial entrepreneur and founder of Tony Elumelu Foundation, Tony Elumelu has shared 5 vital tips for building a successful business during a talk at the Lagos Business School ‘Dinner with…’ event earlier this week.

He discussed his journey so far and most importantly shared some words of advice to  budding entrepreneurs and those climbing the corporate ladder.

  •  Save Money Religiously– I am a firm believer in saving a portion of your earnings on a monthly basis. My father used to say that if I couldn’t save one naira from the little I earned, then I won’t be able to save anything if I earned one billion. Saving is a vital tool in investing in your future.
  • Work Hard– The difference between talent and hard work is that one is innate and the other can be acquired through sheer determination. Those who are relentless in the pursuit of excellence will always yield results. Growing up, my mother was extremely hard working and through running her businesses she taught me the power of resilience.
  • Seize Opportunities– Be aware of your risk tolerance and weigh up the value of an opportunity according to the potential losses and gains. After assessment- act! Do not be afraid to take a step because you fear the outcome. As the saying goes, fortune favours the bold.
  •  Feed Your Mind– In the pursuit of success, arm yourself with people and things that will nourish you mentally. I was always an avid reader, and would seek business and self-development books, articles and papers that would challenge my thinking and allow me gain insight and breed new ideas.
  • Think Long Term– In all that you do, consider the bigger picture. How will this impact me, my family and community? Both now and 10 years from now. Be broad in your thinking and whether personally or professionally, aim for longevity.


The Tony Elumelu Foundation entrepreneurship programme is still accepting applications. Find full information for your application here.

Apply now before Sunday 1st March http://bit.ly/1vDvEzN


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$100m Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme Is Calling For Applications

Calling all entrepreneurs to apply for the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme.
Tony Elumelu is on a grand mission to forge over 10 000 entrepreneurs within the next decade.

Founded by Nigerian billionaire Tony Elumelu, the pan-African programme is open to young compelling businesses with strong market feasibility, clear financial models and run by capable teams.

The programme includes:

-12-week training programme

– mentorship

– access to crucial networks and resources as well as possible funding.

The qualifying startups that have progressed their business plans sufficiently will each receive second stage seed capital investment of US$5 000 that will be provided as returnable capital.

“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 Programme has been designed to provide that mechanism,” said Parminder Vir, Director of Entrepreneurship at The Tony Elumelu Foundation said in the announcement last month.

“I believe that the private sector in Africa and the entrepreneurs in particular has an important role to play in the growth and the transformation of our continent,” Elumelu says in the video statement below. “2015 is in fact the year of the African entrepreneur.”

Watch this YouTube video for more information.


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