The program, run by the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF), is a 10-year, US$100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor, and fund 10,000 African entrepreneurs by 2024.
Successful applicants will receive 12 weeks of intensive online training, access to a world-class mentor, and US$5,000 in seed capital to prove the concept, plus access to further funding. They will also gain access to the TEF network of startups.
The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Program is a $100 million commitment made by the Elumelu family to empower 10,000 African entrepreneurs over a 10-year period through training, mentorship, and funding.
The goal is to create at least 1Million jobs and contribute over $10 billion in revenue to the African economy.
Through its flagship Entrepreneurship Program the Foundation empowers African entrepreneurs and the entrepreneurship ecosystem across 54 African countries.
How the program works?
The TEF training curriculum has been designed to segment entrepreneurs based on demonstrated capability and knowledge.
The training has been tailored to educate and capacities you in starting or growing your business to overcome the challenges faced by entrepreneurs across the African continent.
The curriculum focuses on practical, iterative learning that is useful even long after the training period.
1- Who can apply?
The program is open to all citizens and legal residents of any one of the 54 African countries. The proposed business must be registered and operate in Africa.
2- Is there an age restriction for applicants?
Yes. Applicants must be 18 years old and must not be considered a minor in their country of residence. There is no upper-limit age restriction.
3- Is there a restriction on the types of business/industry?
Yes. The program is not open to research institutions, faith based organizations, value adding trading companies, government contractors and businesses not located in Africa. Businesses must not adversely affect the environment, lives and property. Business ideas must be for profit, and must be the original work of those making the submission.
4- Is there a restriction on the age of my business?
Yes. All businesses must be business ideas or an early stage company, in the range of 0 to 5 years old.
5- What if I run multiple early-stage businesses?
Your application must focus on ONE business only. We advise choosing your best, most feasible/innovative business idea. Selected entrepreneurs are not permitted to apply for future cohorts of the program, even with a different business idea or name.
6- Will my start-up be excluded if I have a relation/family member who works for the TEF?
Yes. Current employees or their family members from the Tony Elumelu Foundation and affiliate companies in the Heirs Holdings Group and UBA Group are not eligible to apply for the TEF Entrepreneurship Program, either individually or as part of a team.
7- Who is not eligible to participate in the TEF Entrepreneurship Program?
– TEF Audit Partners and their Immediate Family Members.
– Employees of companies affiliated with the Tony Elumelu Foundation who have been involved in the creation or administration of the Program and their Immediate Family Members.
– The Promoter’s consultants and agents (and employees and Immediate Family Members of such employees where the consultants and agents are entities) involved in the creation and administration of this program.
– Research institutions, faith-based organizations, government agencies and businesses not located in Mali will not be eligible to apply for the program.
– Applications by TEF Alumni or their Business Partner.
– Applications by persons disqualified under any previous TEF program.
– Applications made using methods such as a macro, script, using automated devices or processors or other forms of digital tool to gain an unfair advantage.
Incomplete and incorrect applications.
– Applications which contain illegal or unethical Businesses or Business Ideas.
Program application process
1- How do I apply for the program?
All applications must be submitted online through the application platform of the TEFConnect. You must complete an application form by answering a series of mandatory questions.
After submission, you will receive a confirmation email of receipt within 1 working day.
2- What if my company is a partnership?
Only one nominated person from the business or the partnership may join the program. You must have consent from all partners, and have and equal or majority share to participate.
3- Can I apply offline?
No. All applications must be submitted online through the TEFConnect only.
4- What if English is not my first language?
The application form is also available in Arabic, French and Portuguese.
5- What are the important dates and deadlines that I need to be aware of for the application?
The TEFConnect application platform is open from midnight on 1st January, to midnight on 31st March. It will not be possible to submit any applications prior to or after these dates.
Applicants who applied for the 2021 TEF Entrepreneurship Program and have been advised to proceed to the next stage, are kindly requested to review and reconfirm their current submissions via www.tefconnect.com on February 1, 2022.
The portal http://tefconnect.com opened for access & review of previous submissions on February 1, 2022 & reconfirmation must occur on or before March 31, 2022.
6- What information/identification do I need to provide in my application?
You must answer all the mandatory questions in the application form, and provide accurate and up-to-date information.
7- How many applicants will be chosen to join the program?
There are 1,000 places available annually for the applications that are reviewed by Accenture and ultimately selected by the Selection Committee for a placement in the program.
8- Are there application/associated fees?
No. The Tony Elumelu Foundation does not charge any applicants a fee for applying to the program.