EconomyFront page

Tony Elumelu Foundation Shortlists First Stage 5,240 African Entrepreneurs For The TEF-UNDP Entrepreneurship Programme

Kicking off the partnership between the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to empower 100,000 young African entrepreneurs, the Tony Elumelu Foundation has announced the selection of 5,240 young African entrepreneurs, from over 81,000 applications received from seven Sahel countries, to receive business training in the next stage of the inaugural TEF-UNDP Entrepreneurship Programme. The Programme received 43% of submissions from rural areas and 57% from urban areas, 30% of submissions from female business owners and 70% from male business owners. 

Following the business training, the chosen applicants will participate in a pitching competition organised by the Programme’s partner, the UBA Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the United Bank for Africa, with a final selection of 2,100 applicants to be announced on December 15.  The final beneficiaries will join the current 7,531 TEF alumni network, gain access to TEF’s networks, digital platform and receive non-refundable seed capital based on their business needs.

In July, Tony Elumelu Foundation and the United Nations Development Programme announced the TEF-UNDP Entrepreneurship Programme at the African Union (AU) Summit in Niamey, Niger. The partnership will empower 100,000 African entrepreneurs, over a 10-year period, using the Tony Elumelu Foundation’s unique approach of identifying, training, mentoring and funding young African entrepreneurs most likely to create impact.  The first year of the Programme targets Sahel countries, while promoting gender inclusion and post-conflict economic growth, in Nigeria, Niger, Mauritania, Chad, Mali, Burkina Faso and Cameroon. TEF’s empowering approach delivers capacity-building skills, job creation and breaks the cycle of poverty and lack of opportunity, that so often fuels political instability and migration.

Signing the TEF-UNDP Entrepreneurship Programme in Niger—Tony Elumelu, Founder, Tony Elumelu Foundation and Ahunna Eziakonwa, UNDP Regional Director for Africa

The business training will span a four-week period, delivered through TEFConnect, the Foundation’s digital knowledge and networking platform, as well as in select physical locations, targeting specifically microbusiness owners in rural locations. 

Visit for the list of shortlisted candidates.

For media enquiries, please contact: 

In Niamey: Amadou Djibo,  +227 91 20 83 13

In Lagos: Ifesinachi Okpagu, +234-1-2774641-5

In New York: Praise Nutakor, +1 732 405 7940; Alessandro Mrakic, +1 212-906-5907

About UNDP: UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in some 170 countries and territories, we offer a global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations. For more information on UNDP in Africa, kindly visit

About TEF: The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme is a $100 million commitment by the Tony Elumelu Foundation to champion entrepreneurship development in Africa. Beyond its directly funded annual commitment, the Foundation has begun to partner with global development organisations and governments to scale its robust and proven approach, with the goal of creating economic prosperity and breaking the cycle of poverty on the continent.  For more information, visit:

Follow us on Twitter: @TonyElumeluFDN @UNDPAfrica

Spread the love
Show More

Related Articles

Back to top button