Saturday, October 31, 2009

YOSEFO: Micro-lending in Tanzania

The Youth Self Employment Foundation (YOSEFO) is dedicated to providing microfinancing services to young men and women in Tanzania "so that they can create jobs, educate their children, live a healthy life and improve their overall standard of living."

YOSEFO is heavily supported by the Tanzania Investment Bank and the National Microfinance Bank (NMB). This year alone, YOSEFO disbursed about TSH 3.2 billion (about $3 million) between January and September. According to an article on YOSEFO's achievements since its inception 12 years ago, about 70% of this year's beneficiaries were women, and 48% lived in rural regions.

Read more about YOSEFO's financial services:
The Citizen - Article on YOSEFO
YOSEFO homepage
YOSEFO news resources

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tanzania Business Plan Competition

The Business Development Gateway is an initiative in Tanzania funded by the Tanzania Private Sector Foundation, the National Microfinance Bank (NMB), the Peoples Bank of Zanzibar and ZAIN Telecom.

The initiative has opened up its application process for the Business Plan Competition.

Eligibility rules are as follows:
  • You are a national of the United Republic of Tanzania and you live/work on the mainland, Zanzibar or Pemba.
  • You apply as an individual.
  • You are 18 years or older.
  • Your business concept or idea is potentially viable and legal and concerns the expansion of an existing business or the start-up of a new business based in Tanzania.
  • You have a registered for-profit business or you plan to register a for-profit business.
  • You have a privately-owned business. If your business is a joint venture, it has majority ownership by Tanzanians.
  • Your business idea is in one of the following sectors: agriculture and processing, manufacturing, tourism or services.
Applications are due by Friday 13th November 2009.

Read more:
Business Development Gateway homepage
About the Business Development Gateway
Business Plan Competition Eligibility
Other Business Plan Competition guidelines

Microfundo: "a for music"

Microfundo is using a new, simple and collaborative model to keep music artists inspired and fans satisfied.

By creating a profile through Microfundo, music artists can be financially supported through loans from fans. Once an artist's financial goal is reached, Microfundo gives them their funds in bulk, and then helps the artist repay the loans back to the fans with money raised from music sales online.

Since this is a global scheme, artists anywhere who have a following can use Microfundo to take their projects to the next level.

Read more:
Microfundo homepage
About Microfundo
Microfundo on Twitter

Sunday, October 25, 2009


Provides news on Africa's internet growth. Entrepreneurs planning projects related to ICTs are highly recommended to follow OnlineAfrica.

OnlineAfrica website
OnlineAfrica RSS newsfeed
OnlineAfrica on Twitter

Teach a man to fish

Teach A Man To Fish - a UK-based charity - is holding their third annual Pan African Awards for Entrepreneurship in Education (2009).

Teach A Man To Fish is an organization that works "to broaden access for the poor to a high quality education combining vocational training and entrepreneurship by supporting institutions working in this field to increase their financial self-sufficiency."

The Pan African Awards for Entrepreneurship in Education are given to create incentive in small business ventures that increase value in society. An excerpt from the Competition Guidlines:

"The competition is open to all organizations based in Africa working in education, from primary through to tertiary, as well as in non-formal and adult education.

"As well as a first prize of $10,000 and two runners-up prizes of $5,000, there are up to 50 awards of $1,000 available for the best entry from every country on the continent.

"The top three award-winners will be sponsored a trip to South Africa for the awards presentation and peer learning visits to key Educating Africa and TeachAManToFish partners."

The deadline for the 2009 application is December 31st, 2009. Entries may be submitted online, via e-mail, or via post.

Read more:
Teach A Man To Fish homepage
Competition Guidelines
Teach A Man To Fish on Twitter

YIPE: Focussed on youth enterprise

Follow @yipeorg on twitter for information for youth on how to start a business.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Africa Youth Trust

Africa Youth Trust (AYT) is a Kenyan-based organization focused on youth-led development initiatives.

Through its three core program models - Youth Action Against Corruption, Parliament Synergizing Youth in Law Making, and the East African Youth Human Rights and Democracy Program - AYT seeks to empower young adults to persevere through country-wide challenges and build sustainable solutions with social benefits.

AYT is current accepting applications for its training workshop on Equal Status and Human Rights of Women in East Africa.

Read more:
AYT homepage
Youth Action Against Corruption
Parliament Synergizing Youth in Law Making
East African Youth Human Rights and Democracy Program

Friday, October 16, 2009

Global Social Entrepreneurship Competition hosted by Foster

University of Washington's Foster School of Business has opened up its application process for the Global Social Entrepreneurship Competition (GSEC).

An excerpt from the GSEC website: Students from around the world—and across fields of study—are invited to find innovative, commercially-sustainable business solutions to problems of poverty in the developing world. GSEC plans are judged on the quality of life in the developing world, financial sustainability, and implementation feasibility.

Winners are eligible to funding that can propel their projects forward.

Read more:
GSEC website
GSEC Flier
Previous winning business plans

Monday, October 12, 2009

Acumen Fund begins accepting Fellowship applications

The Acumen Fund seeks to use entrepreneurial means to solve the world's biggest challenges. As a non-profit global venture fund, it utilizes "small amounts of philanthropic capital, combined with large doses of business acumen" to galvanize affordable, market-based products and services that address these challenges.

The Acumen Fund Fellowship recruits highly driven individuals from diverse backgrounds to pursue the development of a project in theme areas such as health, water, housing and energy.

An excerpt from the mission of the Fellowship program:

"Through the Fellows Program, Acumen Fund’s goal is to build an entrepreneurial bench of professional talent with strong operational skills, experience in low-income markets, and the moral imagination to build enterprises that meet the needs of low-income consumers. Each year, Acumen Fund recruits highly talented and passionate young professionals to reflect on their role as leaders, build their leadership capacity, and provide much needed management support to our investees."

Youth who have ideas for sustainable social entrepreneurship are highly encouraged to apply, given the Acumen Fund's extensive involvement in the field of entrepreneurship and technical assistance for projects that successfully and efficiently serve basic needs in areas where they are most needed.

Applications for the 2010-2011 Fellowship will be due November 5, 2009.

Learn more about the Fellowship to see how you can apply:
Acumen Fund website
Fellowship program page
Fellowship FAQs

Friday, October 9, 2009

Mo Ibrahim index ranks African nations

The Mo Ibrahim Foundation - an institution committed to promoting good governance across the African continent - has published an index that ranks African countries based on:

- Safety and Rule of Law
- Participation and Human Rights
- Sustainable Economic Opportunity
- Human Development

These rankings may be useful for both, young entrepreneurs living inside as well as outside the listed countries, in planning and targetting potential social enterprise initiatives. "Negative" governance does not necessarily equate to the impossibility of starting capacity-building projects, but may instead present an opportunity to do so.

Check out the rankings here.

Read more:
Mo Ibrahim index methodology
About the Mo Ibrahim Foundation

Thursday, October 8, 2009

SriBuo boosts Ghanaian music artists

SriBuo Media is a new initiative aimed at bringing talent from Ghana onto the world stage.

Focusing on the music industry, SriBuo provides exposure for Ghanaian musicians and in turn brings quality music to listeners from all over the web, including those subscribing to Napster, Amazon MP3, iTunes and other social media portals.

Read more:
SriBuo website
SriBuo on Facebook
Contact SriBuo

Monday, October 5, 2009

We are growing, yet shrinking

An interesting video on general technological growth statistics. This may be useful in the consideration and/or planning of tech-based ventures.

Video researched and produced by Karl Fisch, Scott McLeod, and Jeff Brenman.

To find out more about the "Did you know?" project and updated presentations since then, check out Karl Fisch's blog post.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Computers, Business and Optimism in Uganda

Computers and the Internet are becoming more accessible in Uganda.

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard have partnered up to raise the bar in the IT sector.

According to a article, "the partnership has made laptops, complete with a one-year warranty, available to Ugandans for US$175".

Support is also available: People can bring their laptops to Business Information Centers, specifically catering to rural IT needs, which offer maintenance and space to cultivate entrepreneurship in technology.

In addition, UNIDO has been able to implement a Graduate Entrepreneurship Training through IT (GET-IT) program for youth. Through GET-IT, which is active in 28 locations globally, students are trained on how to use the Internet to pursue entrepreneurial projects.

Read more: article
GET-IT homepage

Kenya Commercial Bank investing in education

Kenya Commercial Bank's (KCB) week-long Community Week began on Saturday, October 3. As part of its social responsibility program this year, the KCB Foundation is focussing on the improvement of school enrollment in promotion of the Kenyan Government's free primary education scheme. There will also be an effort to address education with special needs.

This year, KCB will be supporting Nairobi River Primary School in Buruburu.

Read more:
Kenya Broadcasing Corporation article
KCB homepage
KCB article on Community Week