A challenge for young entrepreneurs

$75 000 is up for grabs in the 2013 Anzisha Prize awards for African youth entrepreneurship in an initiative hosted by the African Leadership Academy in partnership with The MasterCard Foundation.

The prestigious Anzisha Prize rewards young African entrepreneurs, between the ages 15 and 22 who are making a remarkable transformative difference in their communities. The award was designed to celebrates initiative and innovation and identifies those who are leading by example and underscores their ability to significantly shape the future of Africa.

The awards also come with a $10 000 Energy Prize which will be awarded to the applicant who demonstrates ingenuity in developing sustainable renewable energy sources.

Finalists will win an all-expense paid trip to the African Leadership Academy (ALA) in Johannesburg, South Africa, to attend a weeklong entrepreneurship conference and awards gala. While there, they will be taught by the ALA’s renowned Entrepreneurial Leadership faculty as well as experienced business mentors.

In 2012 the the top award was claimed by 21 years old Andrew Mupuya of Uganda for his paper bag production company, Youth Entrepreneurial Link Investments (YELI). Past winners have included Kenya’s Diana Mong’are who founded recycling company Planet Green and became an evangelist for environmental conservation in her community; Ghana’s Yaw Duffour-Awuah who at the age of 16 launched a micro-lending company which has now grown to a financial services company; and Antoinette Furaha from the Democratic Republic of Congo who began a small micro-credit services company that invests in and empowers young refugee women in Uganda.

The Anzisha Prize is open to entrepreneurs from around the African continent aged between 15 and 22.  Entries can be completed online atwww.anzishaprize.org – in either English or French – with the closing deadline on April 1, 2013.  Individuals, teachers and organisations are also being called on to nominate young entrepreneurs in their communities.

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