The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF), the leading philanthropy empowering African entrepreneurs, yesterday made a statement about its gender sensitivity, announcing the appointment of three women to its senior executive positions.
“It is particularly encouraging to see women at the forefront, demonstrating expertise in their fields and highlighting impeccable drive to succeed not just for their benefit but for ours, collectively, as Africans.
With their proven track record and enormous passion, I have no doubt that they will greatly impact the work that we do towards the development of Africa,” the Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Ifeyinwa Ugochukwu, said in a statement.
“We are extremely pleased with these appointments,” he added, announcing: “Somachi Chris-Asoluka becomes Director, Partnerships and Communications, from her prior role as Head of Policy and Partnerships.
“Titilope Akinola, who is now Director of Operations, served as head of our platform, TEFConnect, Africa’s leading digital hub for entrepreneurs; and Nkem Onwudiwe, who newly joins our Marketing and Corporate Communications team, brings formidable corporate experience, across digital marketing, content creation, PR and strategy.”
This, according to him, followed the launch of the 2021 TEF Entrepreneurship Programme, on www.TEFConnect.com, which this year prioritises the economic recovery of small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) and young African entrepreneurs, following the disruptive effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Tony Elumelu Foundation, which marked 10 years of impact in 2020, has trained, mentored and funded over 9,000 young African entrepreneurs from 54 African countries, through the $100 million TEF Entrepreneurship Programme, and provides capacity-building support, advisory and market linkages to over one million Africans through its digital networking platform, TEFConnect.
He added that since 2010, the TEF has addressed key challenges faced by entrepreneurs in Africa, including lack of access to funding, mentoring, training and creating valuable networking opportunities on a global scale.
“The foundation is increasingly sharing its unique ability to identify, train, mentor and fund young entrepreneurs across Africa, through partnerships with institutions such as the European Union, the United Nations Development Programme, the International Committee of the Red Cross and other global development agencies.
“Beneficiaries receive $5,000 non-refundable seed capital and skilled support as they grow, expand their businesses, and contribute to the creation of more jobs in Africa.
“TEF’s work is inspired by our founder’s economic philosophy of Africapitalism, which positions the private sector, and most importantly entrepreneurs, as the catalyst for the social and economic development of the African continent,” he said.