In a bid to promote entrepreneurship and fulfill campaign promises made to Nigerians, the Office of the Vice President launched the Startup Nigeria program.
The platform is great a boost to Nigeria’s economy because it is geared towards supporting citizens with business ideas who lack the capital to prosecute their ideas and generate income through them. In a time where youth unemployment is at a constant increase in Nigeria, the startup program is a laudable effort by the government to curb the problem of unemployment. Partners in the program alongside the government include, National Social Investments Programmes (N-SIP), Ventures Platform, ROAR Nigeria, Paritie Dynamic Enterprise Limited, nHub, KIRKIRA Innovation Hub, ighub, Heartland Incubation Hub, Founders hub, devAmplify, Di-Hub, and COLAB.
The Youth & Entrepreneurship
Statistics show that youth unemployment rate in Nigeria averaged 23.63% from 2014 until 2018, reaching an all time high of 38% in the second quarter of 2018 and a record low of 11.70% in the fourth quarter of 2014. These figures are quite discouraging for the steady growth of the Nigerian economy which youths are supposed to lead. For a government that has constantly preached self-reliance as the best means to fighting unemployment, the large Nigerian populace are expectant of support in raising new ventures as the role of government is very strategic for emerging entrepreneurs. The successful launch of the startup program is proof that the government is aware of the challenges confronting the country’s youths and working to fix it.
Startup Nigeria is a 3-Month Incubation Program designed by the federal government to support innovative idea-staged companies across Nigeria with funding, mentorship and trainings. The curriculum is specifically designed to move companies from ideas to viable products/services. This will serve as a huge boost to local services and foster the government’s efforts toward building the economy from within. The program is aimed at 110 startups, from 11 states in three geopolitical zones; the North West, North Central and South East. States from the zones aforementioned include, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto, Zamfara, Niger, Kwara, FCT Abuja, Kogi, Nassarawa, Benue, Plateau, Enugu, Anambra, Imo, Abia, and Ebonyi.
Founders are afforded the needed leverage to excel with specially designed curriculum to help idea and early-stage entrepreneurs find their footing and grow in Nigeria’s socio-economic terrain. Trainings fashioned towards aiding companies quickly validate their core hypothesis, build products and services users love and gain traction, is also a part of the program.
Mentorship which accelerates business growth and help entrepreneurs succeed faster is equally assured for the startups that will gain from the platform. Startups will also receive investment to help move their ideas forward, along with support on future fundraising.
Call for Application – 27th May- 17th June 2019
Virtual Training- 10th June-26th July 2019
Incubation- 2nd -26th July 2019
Pitch Bootcamp- 29th -30th July 2019
Demo Day- 31st July 2019
Post Program Support- August-September 2019
Image source; startupnigeria.ng
Featured image source: Opportunity Desk
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