In a bid to contribute to the youth empowerment narrative towards strengthening and building capacity of young entrepreneurs, MTN Nigeria has introduced Youth Entrepreneurship Development Programme (YEDP) for young entrepreneurs in Nigeria. The programme offers a line of credit, valuable training and mentorship opportunities to eligible young entrepreneurs.
YEDP candidates are recipients of the MTN Foundation’s Annual Science and Technology Scholarship Scheme and the Scholarship Scheme for Blind Students, which provide awardees in Federal Government tertiary institutions with financial support to cover their tuition fees, book allowance and stipend, from second year till graduation.
YEDP started with online and in-class training for the candidates which were facilitated by experts from the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC), Pan-Atlantic University and Bank of Industry. They later pitched their business plans to a panel of judges comprising experts in various industries. The candidates’ business ideas cover various sectors including agriculture, ICT, health, beauty and fashion, oil and gas, education and others.
Speaking on the programme, the Acting Executive Secretary, MTN Foundation, Odunayo Sanya said, “Unemployment is one of the biggest challenges for Nigerian graduates. There are more young people than the available jobs and we decided to provide a solution to this.
Only participants whose business plan fulfills the criteria of viability and sustainability will be awarded the loan.
50 successful participants will receive loan support of up to N2 million each with a grant of 10 per cent on the principal amount.
The loan is repayable after 36 months at an interest rate of 5 per cent with six months moratorium.
The MTN Foundation engaged the services of the Bank of Industry (BOI), based on their expertise, as an administrative partner to drive the implementation of this initiative.