Image credit: Opinion Nigeria

All of you people who are always shouting, “No capital! No capital!”…Finally, there is hope for capital.

I think it would be wise for those of you who think they have a ‘bright spark’ idea but don’t have money to start it, should key into this…don’t let the devil steal your opportunity!

According to VANGUARD,

Chairman of Heirs Holdings and founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, Mr. Tony Elumelu, has launched a $100 million program to support and promote entrepreneurship across Africa.

Elumelu first hinted of the programme in August at the 2014 US-Africa Leaders Summit held in Washington. He said that the initiative, which he described as “a $100 million endowment to encourage the maturation of African entrepreneurs”, is intended to help up to 10,000 budding African entrepreneurs to develop their ideas into sustainable businesses.

“We will be providing $100m to 10,000 entrepreneurs across Africa through the soon-to-be-launched Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme. By democratising access to opportunity, with an emphasis on tapping into the talent of Africa’s young people, this programme strives to “institutionalise luck”, which is a key factor in the success of any entrepreneur,” he stated.

Specifically, the programme is to provide 1,000 entrepreneurs a year for the next 10 years with seed capital of $5,000 and additional returnable capital of up to $5,000. According to Elumelu, by making half of the money returnable, programme participants are encouraged to develop a sense of responsibility. “I want to make sure there is some spirit of accountability,” he added.

The application process will begin in January 2015 with the announcement of the first 1,000 participants expected by the end of March. In order to be eligible for the initial $5,000 seed capital, successful applicants will have to go through a 12-week online mentoring and training program.

Parminder Vir, Director of the entrepreneurship program, explained: “The business skills training program will give them tools they need to go out and physically implement the lessons they learn.”

The online program will draw on content specifically designed to address the challenges African businesses will face.

“During that stage they will have mentors to help them, as well as access to a curated online library to enable them to find information that is relevant to their business,” Vir added. At the end of the 12 weeks, the 1,000 start-ups will attend a three-day forum in Nigeria. “That event will sow the seed for intra-Africa trade, for pan-Africa trade,” she said.

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