Youthful entrepreneurs eye US$5000 seed capital

By Edwin Muhumuza

Hundreds of youthful entreprenuers have undergone business training in a bid to qualify for seed capital worth US $ 5000. This was courtesy of the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) entrepreneurship Program.

UBA Uganda as part of its initiative to ensure that more Ugandan entrepreneurs emerge as successful applicants for the program this year 2020 has embarked on a free coaching exercise for interested Ugandans.

Speaking at the training, the UBA, relationship Manager in charge of retail banking, Muhwezi Mathias, noted that he expects Ugandans to embrace this platform.

‘Some of the set- backs have been about awareness but with increasing publicity ,it will go a long way to help increase the numbers even when records have indicated an increase in number of applicants and winners.

‘For 2020 we expect to have more than 200 beneficiaries in Uganda if all can have good proposals.’

‘The other challenge is with beneficiaries not coming back to report how they have been successful in their journey but we have set up a program where each beneficiary has a relationship manager with the bank for follow up.’

‘Relatedly an account tailored for beneficiaries has been opened and we have seen some actually come back to report success and even request for more facilities for their ventures’ he said.

The TEF program started in 2015 and in 2016,Uganda has been performing well. Since 2016 to 2018,Uganda has registered 368 beneficiaries.

Uganda has always come second to Nigeria in terms of actual beneficiaries who have been able to access seed capital.

Kenneth Twesigye a beneficiary in 2016,and the proprietor of TechBuzzHub, a start-up notes that applicants have a mentality that it is about the money and having a good business idea but such training changes that perception which requires applicants to explain their ideas in depth.

Globally ,the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme (TEEP) provides 1,000 startups with training, mentorship and US$5,000 in funding and is a 10-year, US$100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor and fund 10,000 African entrepreneurs by 2024.