Following the great success of the
first Forum, last year, we are really excited to be welcoming the 2nd
cohort of 1000 Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs from across the 54 African countries
to the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Forum 28-29th
October 2016, in Lagos, Nigeria.  Over
the past six months, they have completed an intensive online training
programme with mentoring support and submitted
their business plans for review by Accenture.
The TEF Entrepreneurship Forum is the
largest gathering of African entrepreneurs, showcasing
the innovation and
entrepreneurial potential that exists in Africa – the next generation of
African Business Titans. Held over two days, this dynamic platform allows the
Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs to form networks, share knowledge, build cross
border business partnerships, and connect with investors, link with corporate
supply chains, influence policy makers and business leaders participating in
the Forum.
Tony Elumelu, Founder, the Tony
Elumelu Foundation is a firm believer that
entrepreneurship is the cornerstone to economic development and that African
entrepreneurship is central to Africa’s future prosperity. The biggest
opportunities in the coming decade will be created by Africans who start
businesses, generate jobs and wealth, and capture growth opportunities.
There are many advantages of
supporting home-grown businesses across Africa. They have deep insights into
consumer demand and can spot gaps in the market for specific products and
services. They can tap into strong networks and often exhibit a burning drive
to create innovative, often disruptive, solutions to complex challenges. These
are the people who are fueling Africa’s future. They have truly brilliant ideas
but often lack the capital, the training or the support to structure their
savvy commercial instincts into a scalable business plan and then execute it.
Tony Elumelu believes we can’t afford to waste this talent.
That is why in December
2014, he launched the one hundred million dollar Tony Elumelu Foundation
Entrepreneurship Programme to empower the next generation of African
entrepreneurs. Providing ten thousand dollars to one thousand entrepreneurs,
every year for the next ten years.
Over the next 10 years, our goal is to
create 10,000 African-owned businesses, generating 1,000,000 jobs and
contributing $10 billion to revenues across Africa.
The programme provides
participants with the tools that they need to be successful entrepreneurs on
the African continent: 12-week online business development training; mentor
support, access to online resources, peer to peer network across 54 African
countries and seed capital investment. In 2015 and 2016, the Foundation received
over 65,000 applications from across the 54 African economies. We have
developed 2000

African innovators in both technology and physical business and helped to put
African entrepreneurs in front and
centre on the global
stage. Through our ground breaking


we are
democratising opportunity, laying the Foundation
for many businesses to grow and flourish across the continent, creating new
partnerships and trade routes both within Africa and internationally.
For those of you who want to know more about what it takes to be an
entrepreneur I invite you to watch the Foundations documentary
Elumelu Entrepreneurs Transforming Africa
: on YouTube.  It is the captivating story of Tony
Elumelu’s vision to harness and unleash the ingenuity and creativity of
Africa’s entrepreneurs and spur innovation and economic development on the
continent.  Experience
how the Foundation developed a
programme to institutionalize
luck and give entrepreneurs the tools they need to succeed.
We are fortunate to be working with
UBA as our principal sponsor with shared values and complimentary visions.
United Bank for Africa is committed to serving businesses and individuals
across the continent with a footprint in19 countries across the geographic
regions. UBA has a long association of being the preferred financial
institution of SMEs. These are the very same entrepreneurs that we at TEF are
training, mentoring and investing in.
Africa is at a crossroads: by 2030 it
will be home to the world’s largest working age population. Moreover, Africa
have swathes of arable land that has yet to be optimally utilized and its
natural resources remain plentiful. However, without dynamic entrepreneurs,
creating value in the production chain all of these natural endowments and the
physical advantage of having a young working population will be lost. My hope
and aim is that the TEF Entrepreneurship Forum and all of the activities we
have anchored on unleashing African entrepreneurs will not only succeed but
exceed our expectations.
 By: Parminder Vir, OBE – CEO Tony Elumelu Foundation


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