Tony Elumelu Foundation, Africa’s leading philanthropy empowering African entrepreneurs, was represented by a delegation at Afrexim Bank’s Intra Africa Trade Fair in Cairo, Egypt where TEFConnect – the largest digital networking platform connecting African entrepreneurs, investors and mentors, was unveiled to the public.
Speaking on the panel “Making Intra-African Trade work for business – Views from practitioners” at the Intra Africa Trade Fair (IATF), Cairo, on December 12, 2018, TEF Business Specialist, Folarin Aiyegbusi, emphasized the importance of African trade integration and the role of the Foundation’s recently launched TEFConnect in increasing trade and business in Africa beyond physical borders.
“TEFConnect is providing access to the over 450,000 entrepreneurs currently conversing and connecting to business opportunities on the platform. At the Tony Elumelu Foundation, we have witnessed the transformation of our entrepreneurs who have benefitted from our rigorous entrepreneurship programme. TEFConnect offers the same tools, training, mentoring, funding and networking opportunities these entrepreneurs need to succeed. it is open to all entrepreneurs who wish to do business beyond borders,” Folarin said.
Pushing the message further and connecting it with the core theme of entrepreneurship, the Director of Partnerships, Tony Elumelu Foundation, Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu represented the Foundation at IFC’s Africa 2018 Forum in Sharm El Sheikh. There, she spoke on the panel “Policy and Transformational Entrepreneurship” at the Africa 2018 Forum on Friday, December 8 where she advocated for private and public sector collaboration to accelerate the economic transformation of the African continent. Citing the impact of the beneficiaries of the Tony Elumelu Foundation’s Entrepreneurship Programme on the continent and their commitment to creating more jobs through their ventures, Ms. Ugochukwu emphasized the importance of investing in and creating the right environment for SMEs to thrive.
“There are millions of African entrepreneurs looking for training and funding to prove their concept. They need a peaceful and stable environment without multiple taxations. That is why we [at the Foundation] are committed to training and funding African entrepreneurs,” she said.
The Foundation also seized the opportunity to discuss the soon-to-be-open Applications for the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme, which will be declared open on January 1, 2019.