The entrepreneurs, who gathered in Dar es Salaam were greeted by inspirational talks by CEO of Clouds Media Group, Joseph Kusaga and one of the TEF alumni for the year 2017, Allen Kimambo.
The TEF is the private-sector-led philanthropy focused on empowering African entrepreneurs. The Programme targets small business owners, the foundation was established by Tony Elumelu who is also the Group Chairman of United Bank for Africa (UBA Plc) operating in twenty African countries and three global financial service centres, namely: London, New York and Paris.
The Programme is a 10-year, $100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor and fund 10,000 young African entrepreneurs. The goal is to create millions of jobs and the revenue required for the sustainable development of the continent, in line with the Foundation’s philosophy of Africapitalism, which positions the private sector as the growth engine for Africa and emphasizes the importance of creating social and economic wealth.
The TEF Entrepreneurship Programme is open to entrepreneurs from across Africa, either with new startup business ideas or existing businesses of less than 3 years’ existence, operating in any sector. Successful applicants will join the over 9,000 current beneficiaries, from 54 African countries, and receive business training, mentoring, a non-refundable $5,000 of seed capital with access to global business networking opportunities through the TEF Connect; a fully integrated online real-time application that connects several entrepreneurs, their products and services across the continent.
Last year, the Foundation received about 216,000 applications, with 42% coming from women entrepreneurs, from every country on the continent. Since commencement of the TEEP in 2015, 189 Tanzanian entrepreneurs have benefited from the programme with a total funding support of $1.89m (about TZS4.3billion) in the form of training, mentoring and seed capital of $5,000 each to support the implementation of their start-up business ideas or grow their existing businesses.
UBA Tanzania as part of its initiative to ensure that more Tanzanian entrepreneurs emerge as successful applicants for the program this year 2020, decided to organize a free coaching session for the interested members of the public.
A total of 100potential applicants participated in an intensive business training organized by the bank. The application for TEF opened since 1stJanuary 2020 and will end early in March.
Speaking at the event, Clouds Media Group’s CEO, Kusaga told participants to take advantage of the positive gesture of UBA Tanzania to ensure that they diligently complete their applications to enable them emerge as winners of the seed fund. He also used the occasion to commend the Group chairman of UBA, Tony Elumelu for dedicating a huge amount of $100million for the development of young entrepreneurs. Encouraging young Tanzanian entrepreneurs to go for the application so as to reduce unemployment challenges, Kusaga advised them to be upfront grabbing such golden opportunities which are very rare to find in our country.
He emphasized that entrepreneurs must only get into a business which they have a passion for. “You must focus, focus and focus but also, you need financial discipline,” he noted.
One of the TEF alumni for the year 2017, Kimambo shared his experience by saying that the programme is transparent and everyone who applies and wins, gets the $5,000 seed capital and enjoys free online training sessions via the TEFConnect.
“I encourage my fellow Tanzanians to grab this opportunity, all you have to do is apply online, submit your best business initiative and win free $5000 as a seed capital to implement your start-up business idea or grow your existing business,” Kimambo said.
UBA Tanzania’s CEO, Usman Isiaka in his welcome address stated that The Tony Elumelu Foundation is the leading philanthropic institution in Africa with focus on entrepreneurship development. “The TEF has trained, mentored and granted seed capitals to over 9000 entrepreneurs across the 54 African countries with cumulative seed capital funding of over $45m,” Isiaka noted while advising the participants and media representatives to encourage other young Tanzanian entrepreneurs apply for the programme.