Tony Elumelu and His TEF Outlook 0

The TEF Entrepreneurship Forum is the largest annual gathering of African entrepreneurs, mentors, investors, media partners, corporations, business, enterprise development agencies, academic institutions, business schools, accelerators, incubators, policy makers, and government agencies from across the continent and world-wide. The TEF Entrepreneurship Forum isa showcase of the innovation and entrepreneurial potential that exists in Africa – the next generation of African Business Titans.
The TEF Entrepreneurship Forum is held over two days and is the physical gathering of the 2016 Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs from 54 African countries in Lagos, Nigeria. This dynamic platform allows the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs to form networks, share knowledge, build cross border business partnerships,and connect with investors, link with corporate supply chains, influence policy makers and business leaders participating in the Forum.
We will explore plenary panels, masterclasses, success stories, TED style talks, sector specific networking session and entertainment. The TEF documentary, Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs: Transforming Africa, will be screened at the Forum.This film tells the story of one man’s vision to harness the ingenuity and creativity of Africa’s entrepreneurs as an engine of economic growth on the continent.
As part of their learning experience, the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs will participate in the Forum’s action packed agenda on a wide range of topics: Solving Africa’s Future Challenges, Access to Finance, Sales and Marketing for SME’s, Industrialization and digitization of Africa among others.
The second day will be a high-level policy gathering to discuss how to improve the ecosystem and to announce pledges from partners and stakeholders on their own agendas to promote entrepreneurship in Africa.  
The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme is an act of faith in our entrepreneurs to transform our continent. In the first year we spent over $8 million of our $100 million commitment – with $5 million going directly to entrepreneurs as seed capital. We have funded entrepreneurs, established pan-African networks and helped extraordinary people take control of their destinies.
At the end of our 10-year commitment, Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs will become a generation of dynamic African business owners, who will prove that local business growth will drive Africa’s economic and social transformation. We believe that by the end of this “Decade of African Entrepreneurship,” thousands of businesses will grow and flourish, driving sustainable prosperity across Africa. Furthermore, they will create ripples and waves of economic transformation across the continent.
The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) was founded by Tony O. Elumelu, CON in 2010, a serial entrepreneur and investor who has a lifelong commitment to philanthropy. The foundation has an audacious mission: to equip and empower thousands of entrepreneurs across Africa so that they, rather than governments, aid agencies and charities will form the foundation of the continent’s social and economic development.
TEF aims to achieve its objective by adopting a tripartite approach:
1.Providing entrepreneurs with business management training, best in class mentoring, seed capital investment and life- long membership to a global network that cuts across all sectors and regions in Africa and is global in its outlook.
2. Promoting thoughts leadership on entrepreneurship through advocacy and evidenced based research as a guide for policy makers across the African continent.
3.Creating a discourse that puts African entrepreneurship at the forefront through thought-leadership programmes, strategic partnerships and long term commitment and the catalyst for long term growth and development on the continent.
The Foundation distinguishes itself by being first and foremost a change agent. Our guiding principles are derived from the economic philosophy of Africapitalism, which was developed by our founder. Africapitalism takes as its central tenet that it is an African led private sector that will effectively lead in the growth of the continent’s economies and be the catalyst of social and economic development.
TEF aims to ‘institutionalize luck’ through its flagship entrepreneurship programme, its portfolio investments, pan-African Network, advocacy activities and research, so that businesses large and small are best equipped to thrive across the continent.
By Cham Victor Bama