TEF and AFD collaborate to promote Youth entrepreneurship in Africa
The Tony Elumelu Foundation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Agence Française de Développement (AFD) which will create a risk-sharing guarantee framework granted by AFD to commercial banks in Africa for their loans to young entrepreneurs.
The main purpose of this MOU is a risk-sharing guarantee framework granted by AFD to commercial banks in Africa for their loans to young entrepreneurs empowered by the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) Entrepreneurship Programme.
The partnership was signed by the Founder of The Tony Elumelu Foundation, Tony O. Elumelu, CON and the AFD Nigeria Country Director, Olivier DELEFOSSE, in the presence of the Vice-President of Nigeria, Mr. Yemi Osinbajo, and the French Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Denys GAUER, on October 14, 2017, the concluding day of the 2017 TEF Entrepreneurship Forum – the largest gathering of African entrepreneurs and the full African entrepreneurship ecosystem - which was held in Lagos, Nigeria.
TEF and AFD have agreed to jointly multiply the impact of their operations to promote youth entrepreneurship in Africa as a veritable vehicle to create jobs for economic growth and prosperity. The partnership also offers joint research studies and publications in the area of youth entrepreneurship in Africa, with a focus on digital and agricultural sectors, to uncover insights that will influence policy formation and the business environment in Africa.
Lastly, AFD will promote the TEF mentorship programme to its managers in order to stimulate volunteers for mentoring young entrepreneurs empowered by the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Tony Elumelu said: “The future of Africa lies in the potential of the private sector to drive sustainable development, fuelled by small and medium business (SMEs). I have always said that if SMEs succeed, the African economy will do well, but they need a certain level of financial backing to succeed. So, this partnership with AFD is a step in the right direction as it will provide thousands of African entrepreneurs with the necessary backing to access bank loans they would need to scale up their businesses”.
In his address, Olivier DELEFOSSE stated that “The role of international donors like AFD is to partner with African Foundations and commercial banks in order to facilitate the funding of start-ups and SMEs. In addition to providing access to professional networks, business training, mentoring and seed capital, this partnership will top up the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme with an additional key tool: access to local banking resources, thanks to the guarantee back up provided by AFD. I am proud to support this Programme and in so doing to contribute to the success of a promising generation of young African entrepreneurs.”
About Agence Francaise De Developpement (AFD)
AFD is a French bilateral development bank. It is part of France’s official public development aid scheme, pursuant to a mission given to it by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, the French Ministry of Finance and Public Accounts and the French Ministry of French Overseas Territories. Its mission contributes towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
It finances projects in many different sectors of the economy as well as health, education and environmental projects using various methods (subsidies, loans, guarantees, etc.). These projects aim to introduce sustainable improvements to the living conditions of the people in these countries. AFD provides funding to governments, public and private companies, the finance sector, local authorities and associations.