Tony Elumelu disclosed that a sum of $100 million was utilized to support and empower entrepreneurs in Africa.

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Mr. Tony Elumelu, the Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF), revealed that the Foundation has provided support to more than 18,000 aspiring African entrepreneurs since its establishment. He made this announcement during a recent engagement in Abuja when he met with Ms. Juta Urpilainen,

Cssr Urpilainen In Finland

the European Union Commissioner for International Partnerships, who was on her inaugural visit to Nigeria.

Elumelu emphasized that in the face of economic difficulties in the country, the foundation has consistently focused on fostering wealth creation through strategic support for entrepreneurship. “The Tony Elumelu Foundation has pledged $100 million to make a difference in the lives of 18,000 young African entrepreneurs. This involves offering them a $5,000 seed capital, providing six weeks of training, and assigning mentors to guide them. As a result, these entrepreneurs have gone on to generate numerous job opportunities, aligning with our desired impact.”

“Our collaboration with the European Union aims to strengthen our partnership. Beyond the Tony Elumelu Foundation’s work, I actively seek investments for Africa and Nigeria. The visiting delegation has a stronger focus on business as opposed to just entrepreneurship, and we believe that genuine empowerment is the ultimate path to achieving peace and security. It’s not about giving out handouts but about tangible economic empowerment.

The foundation’s impact report reveals that it has already generated more than 400,000 jobs, and we remain committed to investing further in youth entrepreneurship,” he mentioned.

Charles Odii, the Director General of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (SMEDAN), also added that the agency will soon conduct feasibility studies to determine the nature of businesses undertaken by Nigerian MSMEs and the funding required to help them thrive. “We need to understand their businesses, their plans, and the type of funding they require. This data will inform our decisions as we work on improving government regulations, financing, and overall business structure, as properly structured businesses are more likely to attract investments,” he stated.

He also mentioned that they plan to enhance their collaborations with the European Union and other international organizations in the near future to stimulate the growth of Nigeria’s 40 million-plus businesses.

In her earlier statement, Ms. Jutta Urpilainen, the EU Commissioner for International Partnerships, expressed her goal of transforming the traditional donor-recipient relationship into mutually beneficial partnerships. She indicated that the EU has allocated approximately £150 million by 2027 for funding support in Africa, with a specific focus on energy, digital, and transportation infrastructure. She further stated that Nigeria presents ample opportunities to establish and strengthen partnerships with the EU in the field of digital marketing, and they are prepared to provide support in this regard.


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