Microsoft 4Afrika has signed a partnership with the Tony Elumelu Foundation to provide tools, resources and mentorship to entrepreneurs enrolled in the foundation’s entrepreneurship programme. In a press release by Microsoft, the two organisations will help entrepreneurs to use ICT to further their businesses, enrich their services and reach new customers.
“Microsoft 4Afrika and the Tony Elumelu Foundation share a common goal to accelerate economic and social development by promoting entrepreneurship…”, says Akin Banuso, General Manager, Microsoft Africa. Echoing sentiment shared by experts and people the world over, he continued saying, “As we enter into an era of digital transformation, it’s vital that we help all entrepreneurs develop relevant technology skills and integrate ICT into their businesses. Technology can help SMEs reach customers outside their local markets, generate powerful business insights and improve their customer retention. We have found that SMEs who adopt this kind of modern IT have seen 15% faster revenue growth than those not using it.”
In what has become an annual event since its inception in 2015, the Tony Elumelu Foundation provides 1000 entrepreneurs with training, mentorship, access to seed capital and membership into the TEF Africa-wide Network through its entrepreneurship programme. With a partner like Microsoft now on board, the entrepreneurs will now have access to an essential ICT dimension, strengthening their capacity and ensuring that they remain relevant and competitive.
During the The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Forum in Lagos in October, Microsoft will be training the entrepreneurs in the usage of its platform and services. In addition, Microsoft will also identify high potential entrepreneurs from the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme and integrate them into its Innovation Grant Programme, a programme which since 2013, has provided financial support to over 55 local startups, who have since generated $5.1 million in reciprocal investments.
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