Access Bank to provide N 9 mln grants, training for female entrepreneurs
Access Bank Plc said it plans to provide up to N9 million in financial grants in addition to capacity building to empower women entrepreneurs in the country.
The bank Group Head W Initiative, Ayona Trimnell said this on Tuesday while declaring open the second edition of a Trimnell said the scheme was designed to create an enabling environment for female entrepreneurs to grow their businesses.
According to her, the programme is designed for three months, incorporating pitching sessions and eight weeks of mini-MBA training in collaboration with the IFC.
“Access Bank has been a leading advocate for women’s economic empowerment in Nigeria and this is the key motivation for the ‘W’ Initiative which caters to the women economy, particularly in the areas of capacity building and creating networking opportunities for women.
“We launched the Pitch-a-ton initiative last year in line with our value proposition as the No.1 Bank of Choice for women in Nigeria, and we got a tremendous amount of applications with innovative business ideas.
“This year, we want to do more and we want to reach out to more female entrepreneurs, not just in Nigeria, but across Africa,” she said.
Trimnell said that the programme would give opportunity to female entrepreneurs in Ghana, Rwanda and Zambia as well as Sierra Leone, Gambia, and Congo to apply and participate in this year’s edition.
She said interested persons who meet the criteria are required to fill an online application.
“The five hundred candidates selected from this pool will then send in a sixty seconds video pitch which will be screened by a credible panel of business experts to select fifty finalists.
“As part of the graduation requirements, the fifty finalists will pitch their businesses, infusing learnings from the mini-MBA and will stand an opportunity to win financial grants up to N5 million,” she said.
Trimnell noted that the Pitch-a-ton was an expansion of the Womenpreneur Business Workshop, under the bank’s women proposition, the W Initiative.