Fidelity Bank Plc has unfolded its partnership with Africaâ€™s Young Entrepreneurs (A.Y.E) aimed at empowering youth entrepreneurs in Nigeria.
The partnership agreement signed recently by both organisations will strengthen the ongoing efforts and initiatives of A.Y.E in developing and supporting future business leaders, a statement issued yesterday by the bank said.
According to the statement, it will also afford Fidelity Bank the opportunity to offer financial and technical advisory services to enhance the competitiveness and dynamism of young Nigerian entrepreneurs.
With a network of over 12.6 million members across the continent and 1.6 million Nigerian members, A.Y.E is the largest network of entrepreneurs in the world.
The organisation uses conferences, workshops and motivational talks to share practical information on how to develop and manage businesses.
As one of Nigeriaâ€™s top lenders operating out of over 240 business offices and other numerous e-channels, this was in tandem with Fidelity Bankâ€™s unique solutions to supporting small businesses and practical steps in hand-holding and guiding entrepreneurs to build sustainable businesses, the statement added.
â€œThe partnership was made possible because we share the same ideas on entrepreneurship and job creation. In line with the federal governmentâ€™s economic diversification plan, more employment opportunities lead to poverty alleviation, improved food security and GDP growth,â€ said CEO of Fidelity Bank, Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo at a media parley in Lagos yesterday.
A.Y.E encourages social entrepreneurship with role models, powerful mentors, social innovators, thought leaders, forward-thinking investors and people passionate about addressing a range of societal and environmental challenges.
These stakeholders gather every once in a year in what is tagged the â€œNetworking with the Giants Conferenceâ€.
The 3rd Annual Conference for 2017 is billed to hold in partnership with Fidelity Bank on November 30 in Lagos.
The annual conference, according to the president of A.Y.E, Mr. Summy Smart Francis, is an exceptional platform for some of the worldâ€™s most accomplished business leaders to network with perhaps the brightest entrepreneurs in Africa.
â€œIt provides ample opportunity for individuals with vibrant business ideas to network with established industry leaders, policymakers and outstanding investors from around the globe to draw priceless, life-transforming inspirations from success stories,â€ he stated.
Prominent business leaders and organisations expected to attend the conference include the majority shareholder in Africaâ€™s largest retail chain, Shoprite Holdings, Dr. Christoffel Wiese, Africaâ€™s richest woman, Mrs. Folorunso Alakija, former President Olusegun Obasanjo, former governor of Lagos State, Chief Bola Ahmed Tinubu, former Nigerian vice-president, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, Delta State governor; Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, Borno State governor, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, Mr. Philip Auerswald from the U.S. and Mr. Fela Durotoye, among others.
With the calibre and diversity of industry leaders billed to attend the conference, Fidelity Bank and A.Y.E are keen on reawakening the latent entrepreneurial spirit in the youth population.
According to the statement, both organisations are committed to identifying burgeoning start-ups with exceptional ideas and showcasing their potential to the entire world.
â€œAs a bank, we are committed to growing the economy and in pursuit of this, we are constantly searching for critical partners that are closely aligned with our strategic objectives. A.Y.E is one of those partners,â€ Okonkwo said.
Speaking in the same vein, A.Y.E president said the partnership was in line with efforts at building the next generation of outstanding leaders, who will shape the economic landscape of the continent.
â€œWe are encouraged by this collaboration with Fidelity Bank which will no doubt enhance among other things, our entrepreneurship advocacy and empowerment objectives,â€ he stated.