By Oluchi Chibuzor
Unity Bank Plc’s ‘Corpreneurship’ Competition has seen more National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members receiving a total of N1 million as grant for business expansion and startup as the competition enters its third stage.
The move to empower them according to the bank becomes imperative as boosting job creation is critical in sustaining the nation’s economy.
In choosing the winners the bank considered the originality, marketability, future employability potential of the product and knowledge of the business of the contestants and announced three NYSC members as winners.
The winners included Ejidike Vitalis, Aromire Yusuf, and Sanni Adeola as first, second and third position respectively. They won N500, 000, N300, 000 and N200,000 respectively.
Speaking at the grand finale of the challenge for the NYSC 2020 Batch B, Stream 1B corp members in Lagos, the Group Head, Retail and SME Banking, Unity Bank Plc, Mr. Olufunwa Akinmade, said the competition was to encourage more youths with clear intentions to expand or start profitable ventures.
“The money we are given is not a loan and we do not want you to lose money. So, you must learn that mistake is part of the business and constantly thinking about the challenge you will face in the business.
“Put the same energy you all have displayed today in your businesses as you face your post-service year ahead.
“Corpreneurship is what we started last year, we started last year with season one. We launched it in Lagos and in three other states which include Edo, Ogun, and Abuja. So, today we are in four locations as we speak right now. It has been one year we have been running this and it has been hugely successful.”
The programme also known as Entrepreneurship Development Initiative, saw seven youths pitch their business plan to Unity Bank’s officials in agribusiness, fashion design, confectionaries and Zobo drink.
Speaking further on if the programme will not be a one-off thing he said, “it is a programme that will stand the test of time, but all we are doing is to support NYSC members to start their own business no matter how small and then grow with it. Unity bank is there and we are offering them a financial, mentorship as well as business mentorship.”
Commenting on his exploit as the winner, the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Akwa, Pharmacy graduate, Ejidike Vitalis, said his drive for local content pushed him into zobo drink production, “our teabag zobo drink needs expansion to meet our demand because of how it is naturally produced with ginger for easy consumption anytime and we appreciate Unity Bank for empowering us through this initiative.”