Tabitha Arennson Abimiku Emerges Winner At AGS Enterprise Challenge Grand Finale In Lagos - Paul Ukpabio's Blog


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Friday, 2 August 2019

Tabitha Arennson Abimiku Emerges Winner At AGS Enterprise Challenge Grand Finale In Lagos

…as Founder launches 1 million USD Women Empowerment Fund

Words by Paul Ukpabio, Pix by King Solomon Ekhaiyeme

The AGS Enterprise Challenge finally came to an end last week in Lagos with Tabitha Arennson Abimiku of Virtouscore Ltd emerging the winner after a competitive pitching among eleven other finalists. The final had an impressive array of panelists and judges.
The Enterprise Challenge which was launched with aim of ensuring that female-led start-ups gain visibility, valuable feedback and grants to scale their businesses gave out grants totalling N3m, free work space for three months and mentoring to the winners.

The winner went home with N1.5m, first runner up N1m, while the second runner up went home with N500,000. According to Ifedayo Durosinmi-Etti, "the AGS Trybe is a social enterprise that empowers women and also encourages young female entrepreneurs across Africa. I started with writing a book on how to access grants for startups, and access other opportunities like fellowships, scholarships and other opportunities there in. That is how we began building into this community of young entrepreneurs that all motivate each other and share opportunities. We have been going far this year. This is our second edition. We expect that our winners at the AGS challenge last year  and the three who have won this year, will go on to shine the light on women who are doing amazing things across Nigeria and eventually, will take to the other parts of Africa.

While throwing more light on the challenge this year, Ifedayo Durosinmi-Etti said that, "over 500 people applied for this year's edition. Even, those that didn’t get to be finalists will still get some visibilities as we make sure that they submitted their pitches online. Even, if we can’t fund them, a lot of people can go online to see what they are doing, and they can still fund these women. We will also make sure they have training, mentorship and for the winners, we have been able to do boot camping for them, better their pitches, and build them in some other fields that can boost their businesses. We did that in partnership with Google Nigeria, and people also partnered with us like UCCA Lagos and we also have some people who came to train them. On the financial management, we also have people like Efe, the Chief financial officer of the Paper Packaging Company.

While responding to questions on the program, Fatima Al Ansar the Head of Missions in Mali, who was a special guest at the event, commended the work of AGS Trybe in empowering women and the role of women in global leadership. "I think Ifedayo Durosinmi-Etti is a good example of women leaders who inspire other women, share her knowledge and share her experiences to network other women; that’s what we want. We want women to support other women across Africa."

Ifedayo Durosinmu-Etti also used the event to launch a new Empowement Fund with an initial fund of 1 Million USD. The gesture immediate attracted a roaring applause among members of the audience.

This year's Challenge had as panelists; Diana Nwajiaku-Smart, CFO of Platform Capital, Khadijat Abdulkadir CTO of Africa Prudential Plc, Ujunwa Ojemeni Impact Investor & Founder AWEDI Network and Mrs Teju Abisoye, an Executive Secretary at the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund.  

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