By Chinwendu Obienyi
As part of its mandate to empower female entrepreneurs with financial and business skills, Access Bank Plc has unveiled the third edition of its Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton Africa programme.
The Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton Africa programme is designed to provide female owned businesses across Africa an opportunity to access finance, world-class business trainings as well as mentoring opportunities. This programme has been designed to create an enabling environment for female entrepreneurs to grow their businesses.
Speaking at the launch of the third edition of the initiative, Ayona Trimnell, Group Head W Initiative, said, that Access Bank has been a leading advocate for women’s economic empowerment in Africa and this is the key motivation for the ‘W’ Initiative which caters to the women economy particularly in the areas of financing, capacity building and creating networking opportunities for women.
She further stated that the bank launched the first Womenpreneur pitch-a-ton initiative in 2019 in line with its value proposition to be the number one Bank of Choice for women in Nigeria, while adding that Access Bank has received over 100,000 applications over the last two years.
“In 2020, despite the pandemic, we were able to expand the programme to other female entrepreneurs across seven African countries with 3 winners emerging from Sierra Leone, Ghana and Zambia out of 50 finalists.
This year we are making the programme bigger and better by increasing the numbers to 100 women entrepreneurs who will emerge as finalists. The programme will also be opening up to a total of nine African countries – Nigeria, Ghana, Zambia, Rwanda, Mozambique, Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone and the Gambia” , she said.
The 2021 Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton Africa programme will offer financial grants, an exclusive certified capacity building program and business coaching aimed at empowering women entrepreneurs.
Interested female entrepreneurs who meet the criteria of having an existing business for at least one year with at least 50 per cent female ownership and between the age range of 18-45 years are eligible and required to fill an online application on www.womenpreneur.ng
All online applications will be reviewed and screened by independent business experts to five hundred (500) candidates who will be required to send in a 60-second video pitch for the opportunity to be selected as part of the final top 100 candidates who will benefit from an exclusive and certified mini-MBA and grant prizes.