Category: Business Grants Page 1 of 2

Business Grants

Apply for Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme 2020

The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) Entrepreneurship Programme is open to startup entrepreneurs, with innovative business ideas or businesses that have been in existence for less than 3 years, in any sector, from across Africa.

What the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme Offers:

  1. Business Training
  2. Mentorship
  3. $5,000 non-refundable seed capital
  4. Global Networking Opportunities


  • Startup African entrepreneurs based in Africa
  • Business at the idea stage are welcome, as well as innovative businesses that have been in existence for less than 3 years
  • Business can be in any sector
  • Business must have potential to create jobs and revenue on the continent


  • January 1, 2020: Application portal opens
  • March 1, 2020: Application portal closes; initial longlist is announced to proceed for business training
  • April – May: Training & mentorship
  • June: Pan-African pitching competitions
  • July: Announcement of finalists at the TEF Forum
  • August – September: Background Check
  • August – December: Seed Funding Disbursement

Selection Process:

  1. Following applications, entrepreneurs will undergo business training.
  2. Shortlisted candidates will prepare and submit an updated business plan
  3. Top performing entrepreneurs will be shortlisted to go through a pitching phase in all 54 African countries, in English, French, Portuguese or Arabic.
  4. Top performers will be selected to receive the $5,000 seed capital.
  5. Finalists to receive $5,000 seed capital will be announced at the TEF Forum


The assessment gives the Foundation an indication of your personality type. It gives them a better indication of how best they can make an impact in your start-up journey. The assessment will take approximately 1hour to complete. You can stop and save your personal details information online and continue later but you cannot save and continue your assessment later.

There are 2 sets of assessments i.e.

1. Psychometric / Personality tests

2. Business and Financial knowledge assessment

After taking the assessment, the system scores you and highlights your segment/path for training. All entrepreneurs that apply will go through a set of training. Training is delivered based on the entrepreneur segment. During this training, you will take tests/quizzes at the end of each module. Your assigned training path will determine whether you will have a chance to get seed capital or not.

Assigned training path

Based on your answers to the assessment questions, the system profiles you and places you in the appropriate training path as follows:

Greenhorn (Level 1)

This means you are a starter according to the business start-up profiling. You will go through the general training on TEFConnect. You will, however, not be eligible for mentorship or seed capital.

Innovator (Level 1)

This means that you have been profiled to be an intermediate entrepreneur. You have a good potential to be a successful entrepreneur. You will go through the Intermediate training modules and you will be assigned a mentor during the programme. Based on your performance through the training programme, you will stand a chance to pitch your business in person to the set of judges for final selection to receive seed capital.

Disruptor (Level 2)

This means that you are or identified to be natural or a seasoned entrepreneur. You will go through the Advanced training modules and you will be assigned a mentor during the programme. Based on your performance through the training programme, you will stand a chance to pitch your business in person to the set of judges for final selection to receive seed capital.

Pls Note

· Innovators and Disruptors stand a chance to receive the same value of seed capital.

· Assessment can only be taken once. Do not take it if you are not ready.

· If you are unable to complete the assessment before the time is up, assessment will be made based on the answered questions.

Read More | Apply Here

Apply For Paradigm Initiative Digital Rights and Inclusion 2020

The Paradigm Initiative Digital Rights and Inclusion 2020 grant aims to involve media professionals in the daily work of the Paradigm Initiative in the fields of digital rights and digital inclusion in Africa.

From April 2020, the selected fellows will work in our offices in Nigeria (Lagos Aba, Abuja and Kano), Cameroon (Yaoundé), Zambia (Lusaka), the Democratic Republic of Congo or even Ghana (Accra). Applications are open to journalists working for media in Africa.

 This scholarship aims to expose media professionals to the fields of digital rights and digital inclusion which are generally underestimated in the development of African countries. The objective is to increase the number of journalistic reports or publications on these fields in Africa.

Selected media professionals must be available for a two (2) week trip to Nigeria and virtual collaboration between April 2020 and August 2020.

The Paradigm Initiative Digital Rights and Inclusion 2020 grant is a 5-month program designed to immerse journalists in mid-career in advocacy – and intervention – efforts in favor of digital rights and digital inclusion in Africa. 

The selected journalists will work with the Paradigm Initiative on various projects and help improve public understanding of digital rights and inclusion issues in Africa.

The components of the scholarship

  • Fully funded trip to attend the Africa Digital Rights and Inclusion Forum (DRIF) in Abuja, Nigeria in April 2020.
  • Training on digital rights and inclusion at the Paradigm Initiative headquarters in Lagos (Nigeria) with team members from other offices in Africa.
  • Fully funded 2-week residency program to visit Paradigm Initiative offices in Nigeria (Abuja, Lagos, Kano, Aba).
  • 4 month virtual training and collaboration with Paradigm Initiative and its partners.
  • The scholarship can also include fully funded local and international trips to attend and cover relevant digital rights and inclusion events.
  • Interaction with the main stakeholders in the defense of digital rights.
  • Paradigm Initiative will provide fellows with a monthly stipend and a one-time research grant for the duration of the fellowship.


  •  Fellows are expected to participate in all planned activities
  • Fellows will have to publish, in their affiliated media (print, television, radio, Internet) at least 15 elements (Feature articles, Reports, etc.) on digital rights and inclusion issues during the duration of the scholarship. Fellows will retain full editorial direction for these reports.
  • Fellows should continue to cover digital rights and inclusion issues after their internship.


  • The scholarship is open to journalists affiliated with the main print and online newspapers in Africa
  • Interested candidates must demonstrate that they have already covered human rights and / or technology issues and are interested in advocacy journalism.
  • Interested candidates must have less than ten years of journalism experience. We are mainly interested in journalists at the start of their careers

Deadline: February 15, 2020 

Read More | Apply Here

The TEF-UNDP Sahel Youth Entrepreneurship Programme 2019

The TEF-UNDP Sahel Youth Entrepreneurship Programme is a partnership between the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) to empower 100,000 additional entrepreneurs over 10 years from seven Sahel African countries: Northern Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroun, Mauritania, Mali and Burkina Faso.The partnership will target young Africans in under-served communities.

The goal is to create 10million new jobs and contribute at least $10billion to the African economy.

The Programme leverages the tried and validated approach to philanthropy on the continent pioneered by the Tony Eluemlu Foundation. It prioritises and positions entrepreneurship as the key enabler to catalyse the economic development of the African continent.

The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme provides the inspiration for the development of the TEF-UNDP Sahel Youth Entrepreneurship Programme which scales up the impact of the Foundation to empower an additional 100,000 entrepreneurs specifically from seven countries in Africa’s Sahel region.


African entrepreneurs will gain non-refundable seed capital, access to a 12-week business training and mentoring. They will also receive visibility and numerous business networking opportunities.


  • You must be an African entrepreneur residing in any of the listed countries: Northern Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroun, Mauritania, Mali and Burkina Faso
  • Your business must not be more than 3 years in existence. Potential businesses at the idea stage are encouraged.

Deadline:  August 5, 2019.

For more information and to apply

Visit TEF website: www.tonyelumelufoundation.org  or www.tefconnect.com.

Apply: Pan-African Awards for Entrepreneurship in Education 2019

The Pan-African Awards for Entrepreneurship in Education recognise African-driven and African based organisations addressing skill gaps, financial insecurity, and underemployment through innovative entrepreneurial education programmes.

With an emphasis on sustainability, the awards offer monetary prizes up to $15,000 as an investment in organisations whose inspirational work is transforming the futures of African Youth. Supported by The Saville Foundation and managed by Teach A Man To Fish, the Pan-African Awards combine the aims and expertise of both organisations.

“The Awards are an exciting chance to recognise and reward more organisations harnessing entrepreneurship to inspire and enable young people in Africa” Nik Kafka, Teach A Man To Fish CEO & Founder

To Apply
Click here to apply for the programme

Deadline: Friday August 16th, 2019

Please read the Terms and Conditions before applying. Need help or want to view this form offline? Download our application guidance or a print version of the application form.

Apply for the Youth engagement in agribusiness and rural economic activities in Africa: Up to $10,000 grant available.

Are you action-oriented and target young academics and professionals, graduate students at the post-coursework/research stage of your programs? The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) is pleased to announce 30 research fellowships for 2019 under the framework of the CARE project.

The IITA received a three-year research grant for “Enhancing Capacity to Apply Research Evidence (CARE) in policy for youth engagement in agribusiness and rural economic activities in Africa” funded by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

The fellowship program seeks to contribute to policy development on youth engagement in agribusiness and rural economic activities in Africa.

Eligibility Criteria

Applicants must be young Africans; the research will be carried out in the following countries: Benin, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Senegal, and Zambia. Applicants must not be more than 40 years old at the time of application. Applicants must be young scholars at a research institute or university in Africa or a student registered in a Ph.D. or Master’s program in recognized universities in Africa, majoring in agricultural economics, agribusiness, or economics or a related social science field, and must have finished their university course work. The duration of the research should not exceed 6 months


Awards for Research Grants are up to $10,000 (Proposals with a reasonable higher budget can also be selected depending on the quality of the research proposal). Grantees will be supervised by IITA’ssocio-economics scientists in close collaboration with their national/university supervisors. Grantees will be offered training on research methodology, data management, and scientific writing. Grantees will be offered training on production of research evidence for policy-making.

Application Requirements

To apply for the Research Fellowship, applicants must submit the following: Completed application form; Copy of the passport or another statement of citizenship. Curriculum Vitae (CV), which includes work history and education. CVs should be no longer than two pages. Proof of registration at an accredited university for MSc and Ph.D. programs (for students). Proof of employment at a research institute or university in Africa (for young academics and professionals).

Guidelines for research proposals

Research proposals should be organized in the order listed below, and page limitations for components must be observed. The Research proposal must include the following components in one PDF document.

 The proposal narrative should not be more than seven pages in length, single-spaced, in 12-point type with 1″ margins. Approximately three pages should be devoted to the problem statement/policy issue, theoretical framework, review of current literature, and research questions. The remaining four pages should include the methodology, contributions to policy, work plan, and dissemination plan. Applicants must present a clear and well thought out methodology and the analysis to be done. The brief dissemination plan should include the intended audience and relevant journals where the research findings might be submitted for publication and professional meetings where the findings might be presented (7 pages maximum).

The conceptual model(s) that outline the framework or design of the study(2 pages maximum)

Contribution to the field to briefly describe the potential contributions this research will make to the field of youth engagement in agribusiness and rural economic activities in Africa (200 words maximum

Reference list. A list of all references included in the text or in the models. Use complete citations, including titles and all authors. (No page limit)

Budget. There is no specific template for the budget. It may be a simple 2-column format or a more complex spreadsheet.

Please save and send your documents in this format: LastName_FirstInitial_Document.pdf (example: Smith_K_proposal.pdf

Applications and deadline

Applications must be submitted electronically in English or French, by email to                                  IITA-TrainingUnit@cgiar.org.

Application documents must be submitted as PDF files. The deadline for submission is 23:59 WAT, 15 March 2019.

Visit IITA for more information

Apply: World Bank Group’s Young Professionals Program

The World Bank is currently seeking applications for its Young Professionals Program (YPP) with an aim to provide opportunity for younger talent who have both a passion for international development and the leadership potential to grow in fascinating top technical and managerial roles in the World Bank Group.

The program is designed for highly qualified and motivated individuals skilled in areas relevant to WBG technical/operations such as economics, finance, education, public health, social sciences, engineering, urban planning, agriculture, natural resources and others. To be competitive for this highly selective program, candidates need to demonstrate a commitment to development, proven academic success, professional achievement, and leadership capability.

Young Professionals are offered a five-year renewable term contract, spend 24 months in a structured development program, and enjoy a variety of benefits and opportunities.

Eligibility Criteria

The following are the minimum requirements to be eligible for the Young Professionals Program:

  • Citizenship of a member country of the World Bank Group
  • Be born on or after October 1, 1986
  • A PhD or Master’s degree and relevant work experience
  • Fluency in English
  • Full proficiency in one or more of the WBG’s working languages: Arabic, Chinese, French, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish is desired but not required
  • Specialization in a field relevant to the WBG Technical/Operations such as economics, finance, education, public health, social sciences, engineering, urban planning, agriculture, natural resources, and others
  • At least three years of relevant professional experience related to development or continued academic study at the doctoral level.

Application Process

The application for the 2019 Selection Process for the Young Professionals Program at the World Bank is open from June 14 – July 31, 2018.

Before You Apply, please ensure that:

  • You meet the minimum requirements for eligibility for the Young Professionals Program and,
  • You have all the information at hand including key dates, an updated Curriculum Vitae (CV), Education Certificates/Transcripts, PhD Dissertation/Master’s Thesis topics (short summary), if applicable, and the Application Essay ready to be uploaded

Deadline: 31 July 2018

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted online via given website.

For more information, please visit Young Professionals Program.

Apply: UN SDG Challenge for Women Entrepreneurs ($20,000 grant)

The WE Empower Challenge is a global business competition for women entrepreneurs who are advancing the UN Sustainable Development Goals and inspiring entire communities to create the world we want by 2030.


  • Has your business been in operation for more than three years?
  • Do you employ at least three full-time staff (or full-time equivalent)?
  • Are you a for-profit or social entrepreneur? (for this competition a social enterprise is a for-profit business with a social mission)
  • Does your business generate at least $100,000 USD in annual sales?
  • Are you available to travel to New York City between September 23-29, 2018


  • Five selected awardees, one from each UN region, will be chosen from those who apply by 1 July 2018. The successful awardees will be notified in early August 2018 and will receive an all-expenses paid trip to New York during the UN Global Goals week (24 – 29 September 2018) to participate in a series of tailored trainings and events. Awardees will also:

• On Tuesday, September 25 participate in a dynamic pitch event hosted by Diane von Furstenberg that brings together top business, tech, venture capital and media leaders with an opportunity for one awardee to receive a $20,000 grant to further their business; UN Global Goals week

• Attend a high-level dialogue with senior UN Officials, the Council of Women World Leaders and the Women Political Leaders Global Forum;

• Participate in Global Citizen week events including a ticket to attend the Global Citizen Festival in Central Park on Saturday Sept 29th; and

• Participate at the UN Private Sector Forum event convened by the UN Secretary-General.

How to Apply

If you are interested in applying for this opportunity, kindly Click here to apply now.

If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to email weempower@vitalvoices.org.

For more information, please visit https://weempower.awardsplatform.com/

Apply: Pitch AgriHack 2018

Pitch AgriHack 2018 is now open for applications. The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), with the support of the African Development Bank (AfDB), in collaboration with the African Green Revolution Forum(AGRA), Women in Tech Africa, Wennovation Hub (Nigeria) and Suguba (regional), has launched the Pitch AgriHack 2018 on the theme: “Women entrepreneurs innovate for agricultural transformation in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific”.

Pitch AgriHack is part of the AgriHack Talent initiative of the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) and aims at accelerating e-agriculture entrepreneurship for improved livelihoods in the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries.


Two categories are available:

  • Early stage platform: This is for e-agriculture applications and platforms that have already been developed but that may still need software or business model improvements. Participants must be able to demonstrate the business potential and functional features of their applications or platforms.
  • Advanced platform: This category is for e-agriculture applications and platforms that are already in operation and generating revenues.

Prizes and other benefits:

  • Up to nine winning companies (including up to five women-led companies) will receive from CTA, AfDB and partners involved a cash prize of up to €15,000 (per start-up), as well as promotional support, additional capacity building and networking opportunities.
  • Some may eventually also benefit from investments from other partners. For more information on prizes, check this page on the Pitch AgriHack blog.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Only start-ups already incorporated (registered in the eligible countries) and those about to complete registration can apply for the Pitch AgriHack. Proof of completion of the registration process is a pre-requisite for the physical attendance in the final.
  • The founders (at least one official founder) of the business should be aged between 18 – 35 years , and be nationals of, and resident in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries signatories of the Cotonou Agreement with the European Union (mentioned below). Applications can be submitted in French or English.
  • Only start-ups with a working ICT application can participate.
  • Past winners of Pitch AgriHack who received grants from CTA are not eligible to take part in this edition. Applications that won AgriHack hackathons but have not benefited from any grant from CTA are eligible.  Any institution having benefited from a CTA grant for its ICT platform cannot apply with the same plate-forme.

Click here to apply

For more information, visit Pitch AgriHack.

D-Prize Innovation Challenge for Poverty Intervention in Developing Countries 2018

The world has already invented ways to end poverty, yet the best interventions are not being distributed at mass-scale. Can you design a business or NGO that solves one of the Distribution Challenges below?

D-Prize funds new entrepreneurs who increase access to proven poverty interventions. D-Prize is exclusively interested in ventures that will scale distribution of an already proven poverty intervention in the developing world. We do not fund prototypes of promising new interventions.

Up to 25 of the most promising proposals will be selected for funding awards, regardless of which challenge track was selected.


All winners will be awarded up to $20,000. The award is offered in the form of a convertible grant

D-Prize Challenges


Eligibility Criteria

  • D-Prize is for aspiring entrepreneurs from anywhere in the world, of any age, and any background.
    We will consider funding existing organizations only if: you are piloting a new distribution-focused initiative, and you need high risk capital.

Selection Criteria

  • You should have enormous ambition, and can imagine yourself as a successful entrepreneur. You are ready to launch your new venture, and – if a pilot proves successful – you are excited to grow it into a world changing organization.
    If you are still a student or have existing commitments, you should have a clear idea how to transition into a full-time founder.
    D-Prize is exclusively interested in ventures that will scale distribution of an already proven poverty intervention in the developing world. We do not fund prototypes of promising new interventions.

The D-Prize judging panel is composed of individuals with professional experience distributing life-changing technologies in the developing world.

Evaluation Criteria

Contestants are evaluated based on:

  • Passion and potential for candidate’s success, as evident by their academic and professional background, relevant skills, and quick leadership trajectory.
    Focus on distribution. Proposals must focus on distributing a proven poverty solution that needs greater access in the developing world.
    Potential for scale, based on the organizational model proposed in the concept note and the entrepreneur’s desire to commit and grow.

Guides for Applicants

It is important to read the application instructions on the programme webpage before applying.

Final decisions expected by December.


  • Early decision round: 2nd April, 2018 at midnight PT (Pacific Time)
  • Regular submission deadline: 23rd April, 2018 at midnight PT
  • Extension deadline (limited to 200 people who register): 14th May, 2018

Award Providers : D-Prize

Further Information

Visit the D-Prize website for more information.

Apply: Africa Agri-Food Development Programme (AADP) 2018

Application Deadline: March 8th, 2018

The Africa Agri-Food Development Programme (AADP) is a joint initiative between the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

The Objective of the AADP is to develop partnerships between the Irish Agri-Food Sector and African countries to support sustainable growth of the local food industry, build markets for local produce and support mutual trade between Ireland and Africa.

Eligibility Criteria

  • The partners involved must include one Irish registered agri food company and one local commercial entity in Africa;
  • All proposed projects must be commercial in nature and focus. Funding will only be awarded to Irish registered agri food companies.
  • AADP funding is up to a maximum of €250,000 per company for a full project or €100,000 for a feasibility study.
  • AADP funding will not exceed 50% of the costs of the project;
  • The funds contributed by the Irish registered agri food company must not comprise funding received from any other Irish Public funding source.
  • If an applicant company was previously successful in applying for AADP funding, it must explain clearly (in the application form) the new project goals/outcomes and how they differ from those in the initial funding round.
  • If an applicant company proposes to undertake a feasibility study, it should include a list of ‘potential’ partners with the application.
  • Projects will be supported in the following countries – Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria Malawi, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia;
  • Funding from the AADF must bring about additionality and not replace existing funding;
  • Successful AADF funding applicants will be encouraged to engage with Irish NGOs where possible on various aspects of the projects i.e. Mechanical and Engineering, Project design, etc.

Evaluation Criteria

Applications will be evaluated against the following criteria:

  • Development Impact
  • Company expertise (Technical, financial etc)
  • Commercial viability
  • Risk Analysis
  • Monitoring and Expenditure

It is intended that any investment by the AADP will be catalytic support with co-funding from the private sector. The fund is designed to leverage greater expertise, experience and investment from the Irish agri-food sector and projects should demonstrate results with a long-term developmental impact that will ultimately lead to sustainable benefits through investment by the private sector.

Irish agri-food expertise is extremely wide-ranging and examples of suitable AADP projects include:

  • Business development
  • Production system
  • Technology Transfer
  • R & D
  • Project Management

Applications to the Fund (doc 90Kb)  are now being accepted through the application form only. The form must be completed by the Irish applicant company and submitted to aadp@agriculture.gov.ie. The closing date for the receipt of applications is 5.00pm on Friday 8th of March 2018.

Should you have queries please email aadp@agriculture.gov.ie.  Please note that only Irish-Agri-Food companies are eligible to apply. Unless you are an Irish-Agri-Food company we are not in a position to respond to you.

How to Apply:

If you are interested in applying for this opportunity, kindly visit the link below to apply

Click here to apply for the Africa Agri-Food Development Programme (AADP) 2018


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