FATE Foundation yesterday announced winners in its business pitch competition that was recently concluded at its inaugural Aspiring Entrepreneurs Programme for Nigerian Agribusiness entrepreneurs.
Targeted at Nigerian youths between the ages of 18 to 35. the programme which launched last year through a grant support from Mitsubishi Corporation's International Contributions programme enabled FATE Foundation support 40 early stage agribusiness startups with information and knowledge to grow and build viable businesses in the agribusiness space by providing training, mentoring, advisory, formal registration of their business entitles and business model guidance.
The business pitch competition which took place on August 29, 2020, had its programme's grand finale resulting to each competing entrepreneur to pitch their business to an expert jury comprising of Mrs. Yemisi Obe (the Entrepreneur in Residence for the programme), Dr. Uyi Ima Edomwonyi and Mr. Sherif Ibrahim. The jury reviewed the businesses pitches in key areas such as market strategy, business model, innovation and viability potential.
According to a statement, the winners of the pitch were Olowo John of OhRich Nigeria who came in first and received a cash prize of N500,000. He was closely followed by Ante Joseph of Maatalous Nasah who came in second and received a cash prize of N200,000 and Ronke Aderinoye of Agrinerve Ventures who came in third and received a cash prize of N150,000.
Speaking about the program, the Managing Director, Mitsubishi Corporation Nigeria Limited, Makoto Saito stated that, "The AEP agribusiness program is one of the many social philanthropy activities of Mitsubishi Corporation (MC) aimed at contributing to the social economic development of the communities and regions where MC operates in response to their needs. One of the focus is capacity building through nurturing, preparing and empowering the next generation to enhance skills to become self-reliant. It has become important to transition agribusiness ideas into viable models and solutions to enhance yield and efficiency across the agribusiness value chain to aid income generation, improve quality of life and overcome the devastating impact of COVID 19."
Also commenting on the conclusion of the programme, the Executive Director, FATE Foundation, Adenike Adeyemi congratulated the winners stating that, "the Aspiring Entrepreneurs Programme: Agribusiness provides a unique opportunity to young agribusiness entrepreneurs and we are proud of the success of the programme and the achievement of the entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurs have proven to be resilient, socially impactful and innovative, by developing sustainable solutions pre and during the COVID-19 pandemic."
She further stated that the two organisations were proud of the partnership, saying it showed how investing time, resources and knowledge in innovative young Nigerians in high growth sectors such as agribusiness are important in empowering the next generation to create wealth, jobs and add significant socio-economic value and look forward to collaborating more to supporting more young entrepreneurs across Nigeria.
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