How to Apply for and Win the Tony Elumelu Foundation Grant 2023

Things You Need to Know About the TEF Grant

What is TEF?

Application for the Tony Elumelu Foundation Grants for 2023 is out. In this article, I am going to take you on a step-by-step process of How to apply for and win the Tony Elumelu Foundation Grant 2023. But firstly, what is TEF? 

TEF, which means Tony Elumelu Foundation, is a leading charity and philanthropy organization in the whole of Africa. The foundation was established in 2010 by a well known and prominent Nigerian business tycoon, Tony Elumelu majorly to empower youth entrepreneurs across the 54 countries in Africa through training, mentorship and membership into Africa’s largest entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Since 2015, the TEF foundation has empowered about 9,000 youths across Africa. On a yearly basis, the TEF foundation organises a grant of $5,000 to support African businessmen and women to expand and support their businesses.

Application Deadline for TEF Grant

Application for the 2023 Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) grant commenced on the 1st of January and is set to end on the 1st of March, 2023.

Eligibility for TEF Grant 

There are certain criteria all applicants and their respective businesses must meet before qualifying for the grant in question. These criteria are:

  • Nationality: To apply for the TEF grant, you must be an indigenous citizen of an African country or hold permanent residentship of an African country. Non-African applications will be automatically declined.
  • Age: All applicants must be in the age range of 18-35, this is to ensure all applicants are above the age considered as minor in their respective countries of origin.
  • Business Feasibility: Over 10,000 Africans apply for the TEF grant yearly and winning the grant totally depends on the feasibility of your business. Is your business solving real life problems? How is your business going to impact the economic development of Africa? These are part of things that determine your fate of winning or losing the grant.
  • Business Plan: To determine the feasibility and scalability of your business, your plan is the most essential thing considered and evaluated. Your business plan must demonstrate a high level of  investability and must be realistic. Unrealistic business plans will not be considered for the TEF grant.
  • Business Eligibility: Before applying for the TEF grant, ensure that your business is set up to make profit and has potential for success in its niche. The business must also run in Africa and must be 0-3 years old. This grant is not meant for non-profit organizations.
  • High Potentiality: Your business and its plan must have the potential and ability to attract people, customers and investors. Inability of your business plan to do so may alter your chances of winning the grant.
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Benefits of TEF Grant

  • Business Training
  • Mentorship
  • $5,000 non-refundable seed capital
  • Global Networking Opportunities

Things to Avoid While Applying for TEF Grant

  • Cloned Ideas, Name and Plans: Submitting the same proposal under different names, creating more that one account by a single person, faking of personality and so on would be a rationale for disqualification while applying for the TEF grant.
  •  False Information: Provision of false information such as age, nationality or personality about yourself or your business will lead to immediate irreversible disqualification.

Requirements for TEF Grant 

  • All applicants are required to complete a self-declaration form.
  • All applicants are required to provide proof of valid identity.
  • All applicants are required to provide a personal bank statement from the past six months.
  • All applicants are required to provide a statement of current personal debt.
  • All applicants are required to provide a reference from an employer, bank and/ or an academic institution.
  • All candidates are expected to provide business bank account details. For applicants residing in UBA host countries, the account must be a UBA account.

TEF Grant Application Process

The TEF grant has a well laid down process of application which must be followed carefully and completely to be considered for the grant. Failure to follow the laid down procedures will lead to automatic disqualification.

Stage 1: Registration

This is the very first step to winning the TEF grant. In this stage, you are required to sign up for the grant on the Tony Elumelu Foundation website. Click the button below to sign up.

Sign Up

Stage  2: Application

After creating a TEF connect account in the previous step, a list of all the TEF programs that you can apply for will be made available on your screen from which you must select “2023 TEF flagship program”. The application form consists of four parts:

  1. Personal Information: in this part, you are expected to provide information about yourself and your type of personality. As said earlier, you must maintain a reasonable level of sincerity while filling out the form.
  2. Commercial Information: in this part, you’re required to provide information about your business and a little description of your business plan/idea. All information provided in this part must be very detailed and sincere.
  3. Cognitive Assessment: this part of the application is meant to know more about you, measure your mental ability, your intelligence quotient and also your financial and business acumen. There are straightforward questions, calculation-based questions, pattern recognition questions & scenario-based questions. You will be given 45 minutes to answer all the questions in this part.
  4. Declaration: this part consists of simple ‘yes or no’ questions. According to previous years applicants, most or all of your answers to the questions in this part should be NO.
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Stage 3: Verification, Acceptance and Mentorship 

At this point, your personal and commercial details will be thoroughly scrutinized. Applicants whose details are irrelevant or contain false information will be disqualified at this stage. Successful applicants will be accepted into the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Program. They will also have access to mentors to guide them through the process.

Stage 4: Business Training 

This is the stage whereby all participants will be trained on the basics of business, business administration, financial literacy and so on. This stage is a major stage that is meant to prepare all the participants for the future stage by enlightening them more about business and equipping them with the knowledge to prepare their proposals.

Stage 5: Business Plan (proposal)

All applicants who made it to this stage are required to provide their respective business plans. Business plan is a document that defines in detail a company’s objectives and how it plans to achieve its goals. This business plan will contain all the necessary information about the business, how it will run and how the grant will be used to fund your business. Make sure your business plan is feasible, productive and realistic. Unrealistic business plans will not be considered for the grant.

Stage 6: Presentation

Participants who made it to this stage are required to present their business to a panel of judges. These judges are often African experts in the field of business. A high level of public speaking skills is essential to excel in this stage. There are two things that determine your excellence in this stage, they are:

  1. Content: this means the total idea and viability of the information you’re presenting. Your content in this case is your business proposal.
  2. Delivery: this means how you deliver your content to the audience. Your level of fluency, boldness and charisma is also part of the criteria for winning this stage of the grant.
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Stage 7: Seed Capital

This is the very last stage of the TEF grant program. The entrepreneurs with the best presentations are selected and awarded the grant of $5,000 (equivalent to N3,550,000 as at 15th of January, 2023).

Note: TEF grant is strictly for people with great passion for entrepreneurship and business related concepts.

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