The Different Funding Sources Available To Small Businesses in Nigeria
The Different Funding Sources Available To Small Businesses in Nigeria
Running a small business venture can be quite tough and tasking in a country like Nigeria currently battling from poor GDP growth, inflation, high exchange rate, poor infrastructure and what have you. Getting funds for maintaining an enterprise is a huge challenge for entrepreneurs with potentials as the economic downslide has its toll on every Nigerian citizen whether wealthy or poor. However, the role of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) cannot be under-estimated in any country’s economy as it serves as great source of employment to citizens willing to run their own enterprise and also, it is easily accessible to the populace. Needless to say, small businesses are the foundation on which bigger ventures thrive. The various sources of capitals available for small businesses in Nigeria are examined below.
AYEEN Financial Grants
The Africa Young Entrepreneurs programme is fully committed to empowering young entrepreneurs across Africa through creating platforms that facilitate intra-trade in the continent. Developing the next generation of outstanding African entrepreneurs that will assist in shaping the economies and political landscape of their home countries is the major focus of the programme. AYEEN targets small businesses in various sectors of the economy to finance. Winners of the programme do not have to give organizers a stake in their prize, they will be monitored for a year though. To be eligible:
– Applicant must be a Nigerian citizen
– Applicant business must be located in Nigeria
To find out more on the programme, visit www.ayeen.ng
Another major source of fund for small businesses in Nigeria is the Founder Institute (FI). It is the world’s largest pre-seed start-up accelerator with chapters across 180+ cities around the world and graduates whose efforts are evident in building companies exceeding $20B in estimated value. The organisation helps starters get to traction and funding with a support network of startup experts that are invested in ensuring one’s success, and structured building process. The Silicon Valley-based startup accelerator launched its chapter in Lagos State, Nigeria on March 19, 2019 with the aim to provide Nigerian startups with the support, network, and structured process needed to build enduring companies. Emerging businesses that posses’ minimum viable product (MVP), as well as early stage companies that are yet to raise a seed funding are equally the target of the institute. Founders with regular 9-5 jobs and shares are equally accepted by the FI.
The FI program is a giant step for new ventures as it is concentrated and designed for founders and teams all throughout the pre-seed stage. Aspiring entrepreneurs with full time job, solo starters, teams, and founders of established companies that are pre-funded are not exempted. It is extremely important to note that the major aim of establishing the FI global program is to help curb lack of structure, mentorship and network which is why many startups die in their idea/early stages. The institute’s program is far more advanced than many online, educational, or free programs run by governments and universities. For more information, visit www.fi.co
Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme
One of the most reliable platforms for funding small business establishments in Nigeria today is the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme (TEEP). The program was launched by Nigeria business tycoon Tony Elumelu through his foundation (Tony Elumelu Foundation- TEF), 2019 marked the fifth year into the program. The annual funding avenue is geared towards supporting small and medium enterprises. Launched in 2015, 1,000 entrepreneurs across the African continent are selected from a pull of over 50,000 applicants for the program. Major aim of the avenue is to provide seed funding of up to 10,000 USD to business owners in a bid to boost a self-reliant African economy.
Applications submitted are thoroughly reviewed by business experts in the industry. Successful candidates are selected based on market feasibility, clear financial models, and a capable team to run the venture. The program cycle starts with an application process opened from January 1 to March 1 every year. To be eligible:
- Business must be based in Africa
- Business must be profit-oriented
- Business must be 0-3 years
- Applicant must be at least 18 and a legal resident or citizen of an African country.
For more information, visit www.tonyelumelufoundation.org
Bank Of Industry (BOI)
In a bid to promote entrepreneurship, the Bank Of Industry launched a youth empowerment program for young and talented individuals willing to venture into various sectors of the Nigerian economy. Youth unemployment in Nigeria which is a huge challenge confronting the economy is major factor for efforts made by the BOI in form of Youth Entrepreneurship Support (YES) programme. The programme is aimed at building the capacity of Nigerian youths and funding their business ideas. Equipping youths with required skills and knowledge of being self-employed by starting and managing their own businesses is top on the list of priorities for the programme. To find out more, see www.boi.ng
YouWin Connect Nigeria
The federal government of Nigeria through the ministry of finance, established YouWIN Connect, a multimedia programme aimed at promoting entrepreneurship, job creation and wealth via enterprise education for young Nigerians. Enhancing productivity of Nigerian entrepreneurs is assured with the programme through relevant SME development tools. Youths in target sectors that align with federal government’s objective of diversifying the economy, promoting competition and transparency aid in fostering the program. Eligibility for the programme includes:
- Applicant must be graduate from a higher institution
- Applicant must be between the ages of 18 and 40
- Applicant must be Nigerian and legally resident in Nigeria
- Applicant business must be in Nigeria
- Effective communication in written and spoken English
- Applicant must be an employee of the Nigerian Civil Service
- Previous YouWIN awardees are ineligible to apply.
For further enquiries visit: www.apply.youwinconnect.org.ng
Diamond Bank BET Programme
Diamond bank is one of the few commercial banks in Nigeria that help in promoting entrepreneurship. With the Building Entrepreneurship Today programme specially designed to help budding entrepreneurs, SMEs are sure target to get funding from the scheme. Annually, 50 individuals emerge from the numerous pool of applications received and they undergo intensive six months business training. After the training period has elapsed, the top five (5) entrepreneurs are given financial grants as seed capital for raising their ventures to bigger level.
BET has witnessed six successful editions with over 25 winners and over 150 businesses supported through the programme. At the sixth edition, 3 million naira grants were issued to the finalists to improve their businesses. With the merger between Access bank and Diamond bank, it is hoped that this programme continues and present something even bigger. For more information, visit www.diamondbet.com.ng
Want to begin the process for applying for any of these opportunities, please feel free to contact us today.
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