From John Silas, Lagos
The Tony Elumelu Foundation plans to launch the world’s largest digital platform for African entrepreneurs and the African entrepreneurship ecosystem – TEFConnect.
In a press statement, the foundation said that TEFConnect would be officially unveiled at this year’s TEF Forum on October 25, 2018 at Federal Palace Hotel, Lagos.
In harnessing and building on the success of Africa’s largest entrepreneurship catalyst, the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme, which has attracted over 300,000 African entrepreneurs as applicants and trained and funded 4,460 till date, is further democratising access to opportunity.
TEFConnect is an open source platform, which will provide bespoke tools and content to catalyse business development for millions across the continent, through technology and directly applicable content.
Positioned as the “Facebook for African Entrepreneurs”, the TEFConnect platform is a contemporary, intuitive, informative and user-friendly go-to entrepreneurship space, which provides five specific benefits to its users, including: The one-stop digital home for entrepreneurship ecosystem players, including entrepreneurs, incubators, investors, academia and the private sector, providing news, informative resources, entrepreneurship events and opportunities.
*Creating the space to allow African entrepreneurs to transact across countries and regions in Africa’s largest digital marketplace, with traffic reaching millions of consumers.
*Access to free business tools such as financial planning calculators, business plan generators and marketing templates.
*Access to the Foundation’s Entrepreneurship Programme Application Form, Enterprise Toolkit and business mentoring by global business leaders.
*Enabling entrepreneurs to promote their businesses to potential investors and other entrepreneurs for cross-border collaboration.
Speaking on the launch of TEFConnect, the CEO of the Foundation, Parminder Vir said: “The Tony Elumelu Foundation is simply about empowering African entrepreneurs. First, we launched the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme to provide 10,000 African entrepreneurs, over a period of 10 years with seed capital, mentorship and training. Next, we convened the full entrepreneurial ecosystem at the TEF Forum to deliberate discussions to change the narrative of Africa. Now, we are scaling our impact by connecting African entrepreneurship ecosystem on a single platform.”
The Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, Tony O. Elumelu, said: “In the four years, since the launch of the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme, we have shown that entrepreneurship can change a continent – we have invested in people and processes. We have already helped create business successes and brought policy makers into the entrepreneurial dynamic. But in many ways, we are scratching the surface. This year we are broadening our scope, taking the conversation to where interaction is increasingly occurring – the digital realm. By connecting African entrepreneurs globally on TEFConnect, we are further unleashing the true potential of our entrepreneurs and transforming the continent,” he said.