Meet the Billionaire Whose $100M Program Will Create 10,000 Black Entrepreneurs In 10 Years


Tony Elumelu, a Nigerian billionaire entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist, launched a 10-year entrepreneurship program worth $100 million in 2015 with a goal to support 10,000 entrepreneurs across Africa. Now in its 5th year, the program has already helped more than 7,500 entrepreneurs of African descent.

The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Program, an initiative of the leading foundation philanthropic institution in Africa, is committed to providing training, mentoring, and funding to empower entrepreneurs across Africa. In the long run, the program is expected to create at least 1,000,000 new jobs and contribute $10 billion in annual revenues to Africa’s economy.

The program has since received over 300,000 applications. The selected ones participate in a comprehensive program including a customized 12-week business skills training course, mentoring, an entrepreneurship ‘boot camp’ as well as seed capital funding.

Tony Elumelu, a billionaire who dominated the industry of banking, energy, investments, and real estate, backed the $100 million grant. His economic philosophy of Africapitalism and his goal to give opportunities for a new generation of African entrepreneurs inspired the program.

“The opportunity and challenge in Africa is scale — in our people, our resources and our horizons. In my business and philanthropic journeys, I have always sought ways to help inspire a generation across our continent. This programme brings together my own entrepreneurial experience and my fundamental belief that entrepreneurs — women and men across Africa — will lead Africa’s development and transform our futures,” Tony Elumelu, founder of The Tony Elumelu Foundation, said in a statement.

In the previous years, the program, which is considered the largest African philanthropic initiative committed to empowering African entrepreneurs, has helped transform several businesses and communities. It aims to reach more entrepreneurs in the coming years.

For more information about the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Program, visit

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