How Well Do You Know the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme!
The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) Entrepreneurship Programme is a laser focused initiative that empowers African youths’ entrepreneurial creative, and innovative spirits to create decent jobs and sustainable businesses, as well as drive women economic empowerment and poverty alleviation. The Programme empowers African entrepreneurs across all 54 African countries, including vulnerable, fragile, and under-served communities in rural and border areas with capacity building, business management training, mentoring, funding, and providing additional access to financing to the most promising start-ups.
- Promotes entrepreneurship development in Africa, focusing on startups and existing MSMEs (Micro Small and Medium Enterprises).
- Provides entrepreneurship skills training to startups and emerging African entrepreneurs.
- Delivers Business Development Services (BDS) necessary for startups and existing MSMEs across Africa for growth and diversification.
- Promotes innovation, mentoring, technology development, networks, and market linkages among African Entrepreneurs.
- Promotes women inclusion in the different sectors of the economy.
- Creates initiatives that promote access to affordable credit, working capital, guarantees, and other financial services suitable for startups and small businesses in Africa.
- Drives policy advocacy by fostering partnerships with state and non-state actors to improve policy and business environment for local enterprises’ development in Africa.
- Sets up systematic monitoring and evaluation of the impact on African Entrepreneurs.
- Engages private sector leaders, corporations, and businesses to support the development of African entrepreneurs.
The programme directly addresses some of the most endemic challenges to African start-ups through a 4-step process:
The TEF Business Management Training
The programme provides access to TEF’s proprietary online Start-up Toolkit training, which is comprehensive, practical training that equips entrepreneurs with resources on financial planning, market analysis, product marketing, business management skills, and many more. Over the period the participants are given access to the TEF Business Training on TEFConnect. The curriculum comprises of 8 modules and an assessment at the end of each module. The participants get support from our dedicated mentors to complete the training & assessment. A weekly webinar is held by TEF (Tony Elumelu Foundation) to facilitate a deeper understanding of the principles covered and respond to questions. We offer our custom training in English, French, Portuguese & Arabic.
The programme matches mentors selected from all over the world in a 1:2 ratio with entrepreneurs to coach and guide them through the Business Management training programme. The mentorship leverages online tools such as the TEFconnect platform, emails, social media, etc. Mentor selection and matching is carefully conducted to ensure alignment with the entrepreneurs’ goals and objective.
Business plan preparation and review
The programme further supports entrepreneurs that have been through the Business Management training to develop a business plan using a simplified template provided. After this, a business plan certification competitive process occurs to review, provide feedback, and refine the document to ensure feasibility.
Seed capital investment
Upon certification of the business plan, the Programme provides a non-refundable seed capital investment of up to USD 5,000 in the business name of the entrepreneur. A due diligence exercise is conducted in which the entrepreneur is required to fulfil certain compliance criteria before being eligible for the funding
The Seven Pillars of the Tony Elumelu foundation Entrepreneurship Programme
The Entrepreneurship programme is built around seven pillars that are considered to be the key components of a successful entrepreneurial venture. These seven pillars are:
TEF Business Management Training
The TEF Business Management Training is a training that has been carefully curated to equip the entrepreneurs with business knowledge & skills required to launch and run successful businesses.
It covers several topics including starting and scaling a business, business development, financials & bookkeeping, marketing strategy, effective management and building a dynamic team.
The TEF Mentorship Programme allows the entrepreneurs to access experienced and skilled mentors through the TEFConnect Platform.
The entrepreneurs are paired with mentors who support, guide, and help with expanding their skills or experiences. These mentors have faced similar challenges and are able to steer these businesses on a successful path.
The TEFConnect Platform
TEFConnect Platform is a world class software supporting the entire lifecycle of the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme. It is the Largest digital online platform for the 1.5 million users currently on TEFConnect.
We implement all our programmes on TEFConnect and it cuts across all the phases. The platform stores all our materials, videos, tasks, templates, and interesting articles. The robust resources aim to build the right character in the entrepreneurs.
TEF Coaching is the holistic support given to the entrepreneurs during the training programme. They are supported by business experts with professional experience between 1 to 4 years. The Coaches are passionate and willing to pass the right knowledge and skillsets to the entrepreneurs.
The Foundation adopts a hybrid (virtual & physical) coaching mechanism.
This phase of the programme involves disbursing funds to the entrepreneurs who have been selected after successfully completing the programme. Each entrepreneur receives a non-returnable seed capital of $5,000. The aim is to support early growth, proof-of-concept and/or enhance their business operation. This seed capital is tied to clear milestones in a well-articulated and relevant business plan.
The Tony Elumelu Foundation has funded over 18,000 entrepreneurs across all 54 African countries. In 2021 for instance, 400,000 entrepreneurs applied, over 200,000 were shortlisted for training, 89,000 successfully made it to the business plan stage, 24,000 were shortlisted to enrol in the pitching competition, and 5,000 were selected and chosen for seed capital funding of $5000 each.
The TEF Forum is the largest gathering of African entrepreneurs across the continent. The Forum hosts an estimated 10,000 audience in location with millions of people joining the event virtually from all around the world.
Present at the Forum are African Presidents, entrepreneurs in the ecosystem, investors, policy makers and Private sector leaders. This Provides speaking visibility and publicity for both the TEF’s partners and beneficiaries.
TEF Alumni Network and Meetups
The TEF alumni network comprises all Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs, following the successful completion of the training programme.
The online and offline network promotes sector-based and geography-based communities, collaboration across Africa as well as a healthy competition and it allows the entrepreneurs organise meet-ups at the country and state-level to ignite the entrepreneurial fire and promote close interaction within the programme.
The seven pillars of the Tony Elumelu Foundation entrepreneurship program provide a comprehensive framework for supporting African entrepreneurs in their efforts to build successful businesses. By providing training, support, and access to resources, the programme is helping to create a new generation of African entrepreneurs who are poised to make a positive impact on the continent and beyond.