The Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a venture capital company, TIIMAfrica, to grow the businesses of 100 youths in the country.
Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, said at the event on Tuesday in Abuja, that the partnership was one in series of collaborations with the private sector to empower the youths.
Dare stressed the need to engage and empower Nigerian youths as part of efforts to reduce crime and fast-track socio-economic development of the nation.
“We will continue to seek partnerships with private organisations and youth-led groups such as TIIMAfrica to give our teeming youth the best possible opportunities,” he said.
Earlier, the Managing Partner of the firm, Samuel Ajako, said the project was aimed at giving a $5,000 grant to about 100 carefully selected youths each to expand their businesses.
“The fund is targeted at 100 startups in Nigeria. There are investors around the world who are looking at expanding at the emerging markets.
“With Nigeria having a good number of tech startup and huge population, a lot of opportunities abound here,” he said.
Ajako said there would be a screening process and a pitch day when each business owner would present his/her business and added that the applicants would be selected on merit.
“There is a benchmark of $5,000 per successful applicant. They have a successful traction of six to12 months.
“They must also have a business presence duly registered in Nigeria with the ability to employ people at the same time.
“TIIMAfrica has a venture fund backed by investors around the world. We are a venture capital company.
“Every single application that comes in will be screened and it will be strictly by merit,” he added.