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Youth Marketing News Africa

Richest youth entrepreneurship prize opens for entries

African Leadership Academy's Centre for Entrepreneurial Leadership, which was established through a multi-year partnership with The MasterCard Foundation, has opened entries for this year's Anzisha Prize, with launch events across the African continent. Applications close on 15 April 2015 and nominations are encouraged.

One of the richest prize competitions of its kind in Africa, it offers over US $75,000 in cash prizes, shared among 12 of the continent's most exciting social and business entrepreneurs aged between 15-22 years old.

Richest youth entrepreneurship prize opens for entries

To ensure no young innovator is overlooked, the Anzisha Prize is encouraging nominations from parents, community leaders and peers to identify hidden talent.

Now in its fifth year, the prize has grown into one of the most sought after awards for young entrepreneurs in Africa. In addition to cash prizes, past winners and finalists have since benefited from media exposure, funding, access to business networks and continuous support through mentorship.

The 12 finalists also win an all-expenses paid trip to South Africa to be a part of a weeklong entrepreneurship workshop at the prestigious African Leadership Academy in Johannesburg.

Luanda to Rabat: the search is on

Application forms and information are available in English, French, Portuguese and Arabic. Moreover, to ensure that young entrepreneurs across the continent are made aware of the prize, the Anzisha team will also be travelling to a number of exciting African cities for the first time.

"We are travelling across the continent - from west to east; north to south," explains Wadzi Katsidzira, leader of the 2015 Anzisha Prize Tour activities. "We want young people everywhere to follow our travels on Facebook and give us advice on where to find the best young entrepreneurs in Africa right now."

Next week official tour activities will be held in Abidjan (Côte d'Ivoire), Luanda (Angola), Kampala (Uganda), followed by Yaoundé (Cameroon) and Rabat (Morocco) in March. Johannesburg, Nairobi and Lagos will also host the Anzisha in the coming weeks.

The Anzisha Prize has also partnered with over 25 organisations across the continent that will be available to assist applicants in countries where the tour does not reach.

Criteria: initiative, innovation and impact

'Anzisha' means 'initiate' in Swahili, and that is what the prize is about. Africa's solutions lies within its youth and the prize is looking for young leaders who are using entrepreneurship to solve problems in their communities and inspire change.

Applications will be judged on the following criteria:

    • Impact - demonstrated, measurable and positive social or economic return

    • Ingenuity - a new or improved approach to a challenge or market opportunity
    • Scalability - the potential to grow into significant businesses or projects

    • Leadership Potential - the qualities to be a role model for Africa's youth

"It was Nelson Mandela who said the youth are the future of a nation, and have the power to bring about drastic change. We at the Anzisha Prize agree and want to support young people who are creating jobs, providing solutions and ultimately changing Africa's story to one of success."

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