Abuja – Parminder Vir, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Tony Elumelu Foundation says Nigeria creative industry will benefit from the 100 million dollar grant of the foundation.
Vir made the disclosure in Abuja when she paid a working visit to the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed.
She said the gesture was part of the collaboration between the foundation and the Ministry of Information and Culture in order to develop the sector.
“We are delighted to be sharing what we are doing to promote the creative industry in pan-Africa by the Tony Elumelu Foundation.
“This is a 100 million dollar commitment by the foundation to empower10,000 entrepreneurs over the next 10 years,’’ she said.
The Chief Executive Officer said that in 2015, the foundation selected 1000 entrepreneurs from 20,000 applications from 53 African countries.
She said that the largest contingent of the selection was from Nigeria.
“More Nigerians were selected because of its highest population in Africa and fastest growing economy in the sub-Sahara.
“Nigeria is also endowed with young entrepreneurs’ population and phenomenal creative population which are very crucial to our project.
“We also discover that the entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial endeavours are in the Nigerian DNA.’’
Vir said that in 2016, the foundation received more than 45,000 applications from which 600 were selected from Nigeria.
She said the 12-month programme was designed to empower and build businesses that would be non-grant dependent.
“The framework is to develop the selected entrepreneurs into businessmen through capacity development.
“We grant them access to quality information that they need to grow their businesses and they will be taught how to network
“At the end of the programme, we provide 5000 dollars each non refundable seed capital.
“They will also be provided with another capital which requires equity,’’ she said.
Vir said that there were a lot of potential in the nation’s creative industry that needed to be harnessed.
She said the country should work towards creating successful creative economy.
In a brief remark before the meeting went into closed door session, the minister said he was impressed with the programmes of the foundation.
Mohammed said government would continue to work with the foundation to reposition the culture, tourism and creative sectors. (NAN)