MTN will today honour its Entrepreneurship Business Grant winners at this year’s Leadership Seminar holding at the Oriental Hotel, Lekki, Lagos.
The Business Grant is an entrepreneurship-support initiative to assist Nigerian budding youths, who participated in the entrepreneurship competition, which took place earlier in the year.
Following invitation for entries in April this year, over 2,000 business plans were received for which MTN set up a faculty that pruned the numbers down to the best 40 per region.
Each of the best 40 entries was later screened to the final 12 entries, from where three winners emerged. The three grand winners were able to convince the faculty that comprises of a select team of professionals and people of proven character, of the claims made in their business plans, as regard the viability and personal ability to execute the plan, if awarded the business grant.
The first prize winner, aside getting a business grant of N20 million from MTN, will be given a six-month mentorship, under the supervision of FATE Foundation, an entrepreneurship development non-profit organisation. The first and second runners-up will receive a grant of N5 million each, from MTN to boost their business plans.
The Leadership Seminar, according to MTN, would continue to hold annually across Nigeria’s major cities. With a record turn-out in all the venues, the participants range from students to members of corporate Nigeria, who aspire to become employers of labour or valuable assets within their organisations. The focus is to orientate the teeming youth, through facilitation and mentorship, about what it takes to be both successful business owners and leaders of tomorrow. Business Grant is a novel addition to the seminar and an improvement on the previous editions.
Apart from seeking to inculcate MTN’s brand essence of ‘can-do spirit’, the entrepreneurship grant is also a social responsibility initiative, which adds to the telecommunication giant’s ways of enriching the lives of its customers, by connecting them with their passion, aspirations and dreams.
MTN was able to drive the initiative, despite the air mishap that led to the death of five members of the panel of judges and two other team members on Sunday June 3rd 2012, aboard the ill-fated Dana airline, on their way from Abuja, where the final screening took place. The success of the initiative, according to MTN, would be an indication that the efforts of the departed souls would not be in vain