The Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) is pleased to announce the 20 winners of the 2019 RUFORUM Young African Entrepreneurs Competition (West Africa). The competition attracted applications from 421 youth (110 females and 311 males) from 12 countries in West Africa including: Nigeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo. The following three stage process was undertaken to identify the top 20 winners:
1. All 421 applications were reviewed for compliance to the call guidelines
2. A total of 373 (88.6%) applications were compliant and were each evaluated by three assessors
3. Top 60 (16.1%) applications were shortlisted for the second level of evaluation. Each application was once again assessed by a team of three expert assessors
4. Top 20 applications were selected as winners after undergoing the second level evaluation
The final list of the top 20 successful winners from six countries in West Africa are presented in the Table below.
RUFORUM believes in the transformative power of entrepreneurship in addressing youth unemployment in Africa. Empowering and involving young people in enterprise development will support youth integration into the economic growth for youth employment. The twenty (20) competitively selected business enterprises will receive an all-expense paid trip (air ticket, and hotel costs) to participate and pitch their innovations at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) at Cape Coast Ghana, 2-6 December 2019.
The call for applications focused on West Africa and was the first edition of the RUFORUM Young African Entrepreneurs Competition that is sub-regional in nature. The first competition which was organized in 2016 attracted a total of 756 applications from 38 countries. The fifteen (15) most competitive youth enterprises were awarded during the Fifth Africa Higher Education Week and RUFORUM Biennial Conference that was held in Cape Town, South Africa. The second competition was organized in 2018, it attracted a total of 1,332 youth from 42 African countries and 23 competitive youth enterprises were awarded during the Sixth Africa Higher Education Week and RUFORUM Biennial Conference that was held in Nairobi, Kenya.
RUFORUM extends its appreciation to all applicants for responding to the RUFORUM Young African Entrepreneurs 2019 Competition (West Africa) and to the reviewers.
Top 20 winners of the RUFORUM Young African Entrepreneurs Competition 2019 (West Africa) ranked by Score
Notes to Editors:
Established by African university vice chancellors in 2004, the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) is a consortium of 121 African universities operating in 38 countries on the continent with a vision to create “a vibrant agricultural sector linked to African universities which produce high-performing graduates and high-quality research responsive to the demands of Africa’s farmers for innovations and able to generate sustainable livelihoods and national economic development”. RUFORUM Secretariat is hosted by the Ministry of Education and Sports in Uganda with Secretariat at Makerere University in Kampala. In 2014, RUFORUM signed an MoU with the African Union Commission to support implementation of the Science, Technology and Innovation Strategy for Africa (STISA 2024) Priority One on reducing poverty and ensuring food and nutrition security. As of August 2017, RUFORUM has supported the training of 1,716 MSc and 436 PhD graduates of whom 94% work in their home countries or region, generated over 300 agricultural technologies and mobilized over US$169 million for strengthening postgraduate education in Africa. Please visit www.ruforum.org for more information.
For additional information, photos and interviews, contact the RUFORUM Corporate Communications & Advocacy Officer below;
Name: Maureen Agena