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What makes African startups investable? By Alysia Silberg

Alysia Silberg, Founder and General Partner at Street Global Venture Capital, started by acknowledging the presences of the following people.

The esteemed ministers, ambassadors and members of government, friends, colleagues and Mr. Willy Mutenza.

Alysia described what she saw on global and regional levels as a technology investor which shared insights regarding startups, venture capital and economic development.


Alysia is a mathematician, statistician, data scientist, investor and she is trained in law. She is an African, having spent the majority of her life in Africa. She is also European and North American. A self-made entrepreneur, experienced technology entrepreneur, global business person Alysia continually engages with governments, corporate leaders and global asset managers.

Like many people in the world, she became an entrepreneur by necessity at a young age. Therefore, she knows the importance and power of entrepreneurship as well as its challenges. She loves entrepreneurship live alone investing and it’s her greatest interests.

Entrepreneurship   and Investment, the two essential parts of Alysia’s life, came together in founding of a venture firm that invests globally in startups. The strategy has these components which reflect what is happening in the world.

They believe many of the future defining startups and unicorn investing opportunities will originate outside Silicon Valley.

They invest in companies addressing global challenges: in health, financial access, business productivity, access to goods & services and infrastructure.

They serve as a bridge between Silicon Valley and the world: the bridge is composed of knowhow, capital and powerful relationships.

They foster an ecosystem to help bring startups to their full potential: our relationships include governments, media and corporations.

They are performance focused. It is the pillar of there strength.


Diversity drives investment performance. Diversity allows them see opportunities others cannot see, embrace or act on. Such as those in the emerging markets.

Diversity helps them attract the world’s best entrepreneurs. Diversity helps them engage

with the many stakeholders necessary to help a startup succeed. Diversity helps them think creatively about how to help a startup realize its full potential.

Investment performance drives social impact. Investment performance comes from investing in strong, self-sustaining, highly scalable companies that can grow to be worth a billion dollars or more.

Performance also delivers social impact because these strong companies can then achieve the scale and longevity sufficient to make an ongoing difference — in improving health, finance, productivity and infrastructure — via continuous innovation and service.

They amplify their effectiveness because investing relatively modest sums in startups can lead to world changing companies. In this way, venture investments can contribute in a greatly magnified way to positive social impact.

Diversity, bridge building, investing, performance, impact. That’s their core. And it’s an idea offered to everyone.

Alysia further said that with the African economic development and startup development, they often get asked questions such as: what does it take to build a startup ecosystem, should they do a startup ecosystem, what have you learned from Silicon Valley, what are you seeing in terms of trends and opportunities. Below are some of the answers.

Governments have a responsibility for fostering economic development in a way that is best for their people. So, the first advice is to ask— what is the context you’re working in, what is needed, what are you trying to achieve and what are your specific goals.

The type of entrepreneurship you support, the types of startups you support, how you do it, etc., all of that hinges on the context and goals you’re working with. In one region, you might be supporting financial technology entrepreneurs and, in another region, it might be agricultural entrepreneurs. In one region it might include supporting high growth startups that expect aim to grow into large, pan-African companies, and in another it might be supporting many small businesses and farmers.

On the topic of startup hubs.

It’s hard to engineer startup hubs. Often the best startup hubs emerge naturally, and governments take the role of helping them thrive.

Startup hubs usually emerge in areas where there are educational institutions, experienced entrepreneurs, larger tech companies, skilled workers, strong infrastructures, supportive financial institutions, favorable laws and regulations, local cultures that promote innovation, government R&D efforts, cool cultural scenes, etc.

Governments can help startup hubs come alive. Great things for governments to do include ensuring there is:

These are the things that have historically made Silicon Valley successful. It takes time. But, with the right investment, right strategy and right policy, a lot can be accomplished. San Francisco had very little technology inside the city itself until became the anchor success and other technology companies were encouraged to locate there. Now the city is transformed.

On the question of ease of doing business, in California or Delaware, you can incorporate a business via a web form. In Silicon Valley, attorneys will work on promising startup’s corporate documents for free until the startups receive funding. Leading banks give startups free banking services. One might even encounter government officials at the airport who are familiar with Y Combinator’s global startup demo day. Everything is oriented towards being standardized and to support business.


<African Startup Investing Trends> Venture capital and African investing trends.

It’s important to note that growing a company with venture capital is a highly specific way of growing a company. The vast majority of businesses that contribute to our societies and economies grow via other forms of financing.

Venture funds require companies to reach billion-dollar valuations in 10-12 years, the typical fund lifetime. And so, a company needs to be able to grow unnaturally fast using capital. To grow fast and reach the required size, the company needs to operate in a very large market. Within African, there is the potential to grow such companies in Africa in sectors such as fin tech, health care, infrastructure, On demand delivery of resources and other areas.

Within the productivity, fin tech and health sectors, Helium Health is a good example of a venture-backed startup that can grow to be a large pan-African company. Helium Health noticed that African hospitals and clinics needed a software platform for improving operations in patient records, billing, workflow and other areas. They also saw that African hospitals and clinics needed software tailored specifically for their needs. This customer centric approach paid off and the Helium Health team is on its way to becoming the gold standard in Africa. They can help millions of people too.

Building enterprise software and productivity tools for Africa’s specific needs is a large opportunity.

Africa will often use traditional infrastructure and newer infrastructure solutions. Many infrastructure needs will be solved or augmented with distributed and networked systems. This is happening in areas such as food, transportation, payments and energy.

In developed markets on demand delivery of goods and services is generally a luxury. In the emerging markets, people want the same quality of service and goods, and delivery networks are required to address these needs.


<Agriculture and Investing>

Agriculture is such an important part of Africa’s economy, stability and contribution to all of our lives. my work.

The future of agriculture is closely tied to technology, information, automation, integrated supply chains and integrated markets.

She said that they had recently invested in a company building a food distribution network for all of Indonesia. The company, Eden Farm, is using technology to inform and connect all of the market participants — from farmers to restaurants. It will increase quality and reliability. It will help support stable pricing. Their goal is to substantially increase the financial well-being of a million farmers and serve the many other businesses that rely on a food supply network. What will help Indonesia is a further integrated food supply chain and market.

In the US, they’ve invested in an autonomous tractor company because farmers in places like California and throughout developed countries face labor shortages. The company is called Bear Flag Robotics. We also invested in a company, Cloosiv, helping regional coffee chains compete with Starbucks with mobile ordering, stock management and other point of sale and financial software tools.

Alysia said that with the examples given above it clearly shows, two different regions have very different needs for the agricultural and food economies. But technology can support both types of needs.

So, the question will be, where is the biggest return on investment and technology as applied within Uganda and various regions inside Uganda. What does the ideal portfolio of investments look like?

We know that a portfolio approach helps.

There are big trends in agriculture — moving from raw commodities to value add products, premium prices for goods that are sustainable and fair trade, premium prices for goods that have reporting and data, new consumer economies in Asia, global competition, the application of data to crop selection and management, the use of data for price stability, farm financing innovations, soil and resource management techniques and much much more.

Capitalizing on these trends and using technology to capitalize on these trends in a way that is adopted, sustainable and readily works for the people on the ground is the key.

All of this is also an important opportunity for the UK and Europe. The UK and Europe can build even stronger bridges composed of technology, capital, information and relationships with Uganda.

Many countries and many investors are interested in investing and doing business with Africa. It will be increasingly important for all of us to continue to differentiate and add value to maintain our competitive advantage. I can speak from my own experience. A few years ago, Silicon Valley investors tended to overlook African tech startups. This is no longer the case. These are now some of the most sought-after investing opportunities, especially in fin tech, logistics and on demand services.

She further said that they maintain a strong position because they added value within Africa through the educational programs on entrepreneurship. And they also maintain strong networks with various communities, while participating in African media and important forums like this one.

They also maintain a strong position with the best founders and in the most sought after investing opportunities by working very hard to listen to them (regarding the context they’re working in, their strategy, their goals), to help them and to develop real and lasting relationships where there is added value even before working with them formally.

Alysia concluded by appreciating all those who helped in one way or another. “I would not be here without the kindness and help of others. A rainbow of people. In Africa, we come from community-oriented societies. In Africa we look after the person next to us, the person next in line. We find what we need inside ourselves and with the help of our families, friends and communities. There is often a lot of chaos around us and sometimes in our lives. We depend on the kindness and strength of others. It’s about building and working for something bigger. Let us all come together in the strength of kindness and caring for others, caring for the world, caring for community and building a good future together for everyone. Thank you very much.” She said.

She also specifically acknowledged Kofi Kufor and John Kufor, and other people who contributed thoughts to this talk.

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Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement – A look at how Uganda and rest of Africa will benefit

Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) makes a shaky beginning – From 17th to 21st March 2018, a summit was held in Kigali, Rwanda to take a step towards creating the biggest economic bloc since the World trade organization (WTO).

55 African countries sent their leaders, like in the case of Uganda, representatives to sign the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) that would put strides in the direction of creating that bloc.

The agreement has been long awaited by many and if completed successfully will see the creation a market of 1.2 billion people and a gross domestic product of 2.5 trillion dollars.

This comes at perfect time as Uganda, like most African countries, has been lobbying for implementation of better regional integration policies to keep up with the trade competition in the world for a while now.

The Agreement is predicted to boost intra-African trade by reducing barriers, such as removing import duties and tackle movement of business persons, delays at the borders that frustrate trade and non-tariff barriers.

This will inadvertently boot the intra-continental business.  The progress of the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), however, hit a snag when 11 members of the African Union did not sign the agreement.

Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement2

Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement hit a snag as 11 members of the African Union did not sign the agreement. Image credit: AU

These countries include; Nigeria and South Africa which are among the largest economies and populations in Africa. The president of Nigeria explained the reasons for the reluctance to join the party via Twitter which included concerns about the implication of signing the Agreement to the local manufacturers and entrepreneurs of their own countries.

South African president, despite not signing the agreement, stated his commitment to it once the necessary legal processes. He did, however, sign the Kigali agreement on the establishment of the AfCFTA. The other countries that were sipping tea on the reluctant-train and failed to sign include; Botswana, Burundi, Eritrea, Benin, Lesotho, Namibia, Zambia, Sierra Leone and Guinea Bissau.

The African Union has not yet agreed on the number of countries that need to ratify for the agreement to be implemented but at least 22 countries must ratify the agreement before it can be implemented. This means that the AfCFTA maybe on its way to being put into action by the end of this year. This also means that we can expect a boost in the intra-African trade by 52% by 2022.

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Stanbic Bank Uganda launches Schools Championships thru ‘Empowering the job creators of tomorrow’ competitions

Uganda’s largest financial institution, Stanbic Bank Uganda, has kicked off it’s 2018 National Schools Championship (NSC) with launches in different regions across Uganda, i.e  Western, Northern, Central and Eastern Uganda.

Working underneath the theme ‘Empowering the job creators of tomorrow’, the 2018 campaign  seeks to encourage innovation among the many college students and embrace entrepreneurship particularly in mild of restricted job opportunities.

The competition may even empower and upskill teachers taking part in it who’re found essential to creating a robust foundation for the success of the scholars (students).

Stanbic Bank Uganda Chief Executive, Patrick Mweheire during the launch.

Some of the participating students during the launch.

Speaking on the regional launch, Stanbic CSI Supervisor, Barbara Kasekende repeated the financial institution’s motive for promoting the championship.

She stated,

Investing in good education is an integral part of Stanbic Bank’s technique in fostering growth within Uganda. The 2018 theme goals to promote entrepreneurship and to empower our future job creators.

Over 6,000 college students from 60 schools throughout Uganda are anticipated to participate on this championship. College students will undergo completely different levels within the competition together with a class test, oral quiz, Essay questions and debates.

She added;

Youth as we speak should be given the chance to find their full potential and we believe this competition will promote a wholesome competition and permit students to point out their perfect ideas. Because of thiswe’re specializing in skilling them with practical monetary and business abilities in addition to life expertise in order that they are often active individuals within the development of Uganda.

We’re excited by the optimistic response to the 2018 competition from all of the areas. Following the call for applications, we’ve got a total of 15 colleges from every area which have been chosen to compete with one another to secure the highest spot to symbolize every area at countrywide stage. I thank all the particpating schools that submitted their entries and congratulate people who certified to compete on the 2018 National Schools Championship

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The Ugandan UK Convention Returns to London for the 8th Edition – Book your seat now

The Ugandan UK Convention Returns to London for the 8th Edition

Dubbed Europe’s leading event focusing on Uganda is returning to London, UK September 15-17 at the Troxy Arena, with a fresh outlook.

The Ugandan UK Convention, a Trade and Investment Forum has now become firmly established as an annual event in the UK.

With a focus on promoting wealth creation in the Pearl of Africa, the UCUK 2018 will gather key economic players including government delegations, high-profile leaders, project developers and international investors.

The conference will cowl 10 financial sectors, particularly manufacturing, agribusiness, power, construction, transportation, IT, health, finTech, tourism and natural resources sectors.

According to the organizers, the conference has a well-structured format for facilitating peer-to-peer engagement, for more advanced deal-making, co-investments, strategic partnerships, and business networking.

New to Diaspora Conventions?

If this is your first year at the Ugandan UK Convention or you’re new to such diaspora events, then the forthcoming Ugandan UK Convention (UCUK) is worth not missing.

Why You Must Attend the 2018 Ugandan UK Convention

The UCUK brings together over 1000 delegates annually together with representatives of governments, the private sector, Diasporas and as well as Entrepreneurs and Investors to debate on ways to achieve trade-led inclusive sustainable development through Entrepreneurship, SME competitiveness, employment and economic growth.

You will get entry to the Convention and Exhibitions which offers opportunities for business to business (B2B), government to business (B2G) engagement and buyers and sellers to:

  1. Strengthen entrepreneurship in the UK and Uganda.
  2. Utilise this annual one-stop conference to tap into investment and trade opportunities in Uganda.
  3. Share experience and lessons learned by others in their quest for international trade.
  4. Engage and network with prospective business partners.
  5. Engage with decision makers and government representatives to specific sectors.

Why Partner with us

The convention will be held at the Troxy Arena in London on Saturday 16 September 2017. For more information, about ticket sales, visit

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President rallies international investors for Uganda’s oil sector


President Museveni yesterday said the development and production cycles of the oil sector the country is leaping to presented “huge opportunities” for both citizens and the private sector considering the volume of goods and services required.
The President in his address delivered by Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda at the fourth international oil and gas conference under the theme Regional Collaboration for first Oil, which closed yesterday, cited, among other opportunities, last year’s commissioning of the crude oil export pipeline from Hoima to Tanga which is expected to cost Shs12 trillion ($3.5b) and the signing of the oil refinery project framework agreement early this month with a consortium of American and Italian firms.
“This is in addition to the various projects under implementation to support the development of the country’s oil and gas resources,” he said. These projects estimated to cost Shs73.5 trillion ($20b), he added, “have great implications for local content and the national economy at large.”
He also mentioned the awarding of eight production licences for the oil fields in Buliisa and Nwoya to upstream international companies, France’s Total E&P and Anglo-Irish Tullow Oil PLC, in August 2016 in addition to the earlier production licence issued to China’s Cnooc in September 2013.

The oil companies claim they have since 2012 spent a combined $3.3b (Shs12 trillion), mainly on acquisition of seismic data and exploration activities.
The capital expenditure for developing the oil fields is approximated at $6.7b (Shs24trillion) borne by the oil companies, although government has a 15 per cent stake in each of the licences through the Uganda National Oil Company.
In October it will be exactly 12 years since the government confirmed that Uganda’s oil finds were commercially viable from 300 million barrels at the time to currently 6.5 billion barrels.
However, there are big question marks on whether commercial production will start after it has now become apparent that government’s target of 2020 is unrealistic compared to the amount of work.
According to ministry of Energy/World Bank estimates, commercial production will fetch Uganda at least Shs5 trillion ($1.5b) annually.
The conference drew several international players, from contractors, consultants, insurers to big banks such as UK’s Standard Chartered which committed to partner with players on the ground during the respective Final Investment Decisions phases.
Already, the UK government’s export credit agency, UK Export Finance, and Standard Chartered Bank, offered up to $350m (Shs1.3 trilion) to finance construction of the Kabaale International Airport in Hoima.
Cnooc is currently finalising the technical Front End Engineering Designs on its Kingfisher field, after the contractor—China’s Offshore Oil Engineering Co-identified 808 risks and further made 365 suggestions to manage those risk.


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Minister: Ugandan Coffee farmers should improve quality, production so as to compete on the world market

Uganda asks Espresso farmers to enhance high quality, manufacturing in order to compete on the world market

Ugandan Coffee (Espresso) farmers should enhance high quality and production that may add value to their coffee if they’re to compete with Kenya and earn more money globally from their cash crop.

As a regional leader, Kenya continues to earn premium costs because of the prime quality of cash crops whereas Uganda solely grows about 10pc of total annual output with Robusta as essential exports.

Robusta is the primary ingredient for all instantaneous coffee, however within the profitable world market, primarily in America, the Arabica selection is probably the most favoured bean and often fetches higher prices.

According to the state minister for agriculture, Hon. Gume Fredrick Ngobi, Ugandans are loosing out to Kenya because of low production quality.

Fredrick Ngobi was speaking last week at the annual assembly of the Cooperative Insurance Company Uganda that passed off in Kampala recently.

The state minister stated;

There’s a need to harmonize produce costs in all East African Community countries in order that they will cut price and promote as one huge bloc as an alternative to single countries. Nonetheless, based on experts, Kenyan coffee beans have a much brighter sweeter taste with advanced tones of fruit and berry that few Ugandan beans can match other than the speciality varieties grown within the highlands.

He added;

I acquired reports indicating that whereas a 50-kilogramme bag of espresso in Kenya was at $700, in Uganda, it was solely being bought at $150 which he stated is discouraging to the farmers. Since we’re already working as an area, heads of cooperatives in Uganda ought to seek the advice of these in Kenya and different countries on how they’re retaining the costs of the farmers’ merchandise comparatively high.

During the general assembly, the CIC Group Chairman, Japheth Magomere stated;

We’re one as one big body, under the East African Farmers Federation to coach and assist farmers on how you can enhance the standard of their merchandise in order that they’re able to deal directly with the buyer without selling to an intermediary.

Based on CIC Uganda, the Nairobi Coffee Exchange figures present that at one level throughout February, a 50 bag kilo of AA Grade coffee was being bought at $679, a mirrored image of the high demand from international roasting houses who value the Kenyan beans’ blending qualities.

The CIC Uganda managing director, Zipporah Mungai called on cooperatives to hitch the insurance group in order that they will work collectively and restrict the high risks involved with the sort of activities cooperatives do.

We provide insurance coverage against fire, theft and burglary, travel insurance, motor comprehensive, motor commercial and many extras. And the most important part is that these cooperatives will have shares and determine on how the earnings made could be invested.

Ivan Asiimwe from the Uganda Cooperative Alliance revealed that insurance coverage is an enormous achievement for the Uganda cooperative movement as they’re benefiting twice from the insurance and the earnings from the shareholdings.

That is our company in partnership with our brothers from Kenya. Instead of getting insurance coverage from different insurance firms who we have now no say or control over, it’s good that now we have ours that will assist in pushing the cooperative agenda forward.

Co-operative Insurance Company (CIC) Africa Uganda Limited is a three-way partnership of CIC Insurance Group Kenya and the Co-operative movement in Uganda. CIC is now fully incorporated and licensed to transact General and Life Insurance business.

The Firm has two subsidiaries; CIC General Insurance Company Ltd and CIC Africa Life Assurance Company Ltd. The 2 subsidiaries transact General and Life assurance business respectively

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CBS PEWOSA Trade Fair 2018: Here’s what you missed at the Uganda Cottage And Industries Trade Fair

CBS PEWOSA Trade Fair 2018 making waves after its conclusion

The Uganda Cottage And Industries Trade Fair, known to most as CBS PEWOSA expo is an 8-day event that ran from 27th March 2018 and was concluded on Tuesday, 3rd April 2018 at Muteesa II Memorial Grounds Wankulukuku, in Kampala, from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm.

From the success of the CBS PEWOSA trade fair last week, there has already chatter amongst this year’s small business owners, entrepreneurs and other participants about plans for next year’s trade fair and the way forward from the trade fair.

Most of this talk is about drumming up more clientele for similar workshops that were held at the trade fair. These trade fair workshops were informative and provided crucial details to help farmers make higher profits cheaply.

During this CBS PEWOSA trade fair exhibition, there were a number of activities including; small-scale industries’ expo, farmers’, corporate and business workshops on cattle farming, piggery, poultry farming, small and commercial matooke farming, etc.

CBS PEWOSA Trade Fair 20184 CBS PEWOSA Trade Fair 20184

The entry fee was affordable for all in attendance including the business owners who were paying 20,000 Uganda shillings entry fee. Knowledge was shared at the trade fair on animal feed and innovations that can be used to increase productivity in the different varieties of farming and the importance of agricultural insurance.

The CBS PEWOSA trade fair never fails to showcase youth and their potential to become successful entrepreneurs.

This event was made possible by CBS, PEWOSA, Stromme Foundation which organized the entire trade fair and ensured that ran smoothly. Many other organizations contributed to the success of the trade fair through sponsorship including Riham, Pepsi, URA, NSSF, KCCA, iRA, BBS terefayina, Big Pig, etc.

The trade fair had an adequate platform to showcase Ugandan-made products in the food and beverage industry with products like coffee, fruit juice, wine and porridge, etc.

The other products exhibited by business owners included African made fabric and fashion, Ugandan handcrafted jewellery and accessories, the solar-powered Kayoola bus, etc. Small business traders with new products for the market in the food and beverage industry said that they were facing a problem with potential customers for their products.

They said that most often than not customers are only inclined to buy a product after seeing that it has a certification stamp from UNBS.

CBS PEWOSA Trade Fair 20184 CBS PEWOSA Trade Fair 20184

This, they say, presents an issue with UNBS that insists that it will certify a product only after it has been marketed and the endless cycle continues as marketing and selling products without a UNBS stamp is a feat Initially, organisers wanted to tap into a new wave of ‘corporate farming’ through the display of state-of-the-art technology and improved yields but the increased demand for other products has left the farming aspect fighting for its place in the trade fair.

The low entry fees ensured that organisers leave anyone behind and the venue was filled to the brim. The business workshops, which mainly focus on farming, remained popular and operated almost non-stop due to multiple bookings.

Experts offered workshops on topics ranging from making your own pesticides cheaply to do-it-yourself techniques of making silage and farm feed from cassava peelings.

Away from the workshops, there were talks given by various government institutions present like KCCA, Uganda Revenue Authority (URA), Uganda Retirement and Benefits Regulatory Authority (URBRA) teaching the public about essentials such as taxation of farming and retirement planning respectively.

Image Credit by 88.8 CBS FM

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Uganda ranks higher on Tony Elumelu Foundation’s 2018 TEF entrepreneurship programme

Africapitalism conference held by Tony Elumelu Foundation ( TEF entrepreneurship programme)

Uganda had the opportunity to host one of the most successful entrepreneurs in Africa, TEF Founder, UBA Group Chairman and philanthropist, Tony O. Elumelu, at a conference held at 3:00 pm at Makerere University on April 11th, 2018. The Tony Elumelu Foundation in partnership with UBA group held a Founders’ conference on the topic of the lecture as africapitalism and entrepreneurship.

The purpose of the conference was for young Ugandan entrepreneurs to gain valuable insight for success in business
and leadership from Mr Tony Elumelu himself. The conference was more like an interactive session and
it was filled to the brim with Young Minds eager to soak up the knowledge, like a new sponge.

The founders’ forum thought it prudent for the future entrepreneurial success stories for this year’s TEF entrepreneurship programme to have this knowledge.

Makerere University chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe with TEF founder, Tony Elumelu. Image by Makerere University

All successful Ugandan applicants of the 2018 TEF programme received an invitation to attend the lecture but the attendance also included the entrepreneurs that didn’t get into the programme but hope to get in next year.

The conference is recent in a string of visits that the TEF has been making around Africa as part of its Africapitalism research project. Last month, the TEF released a report, and Africapitalism- Exploring the Role of the Private Sector in the Sustainable Development of Africa pertaining to the africapitalism research project it is doing in conjunction with Edinburg University.

The aim of the project is to explore how African business leaders can pursue the goals of profit and social wealth creation and identify the extent to which they do this. In order to provide a balanced view, policymakers were included in their study to understand how they view the role of the private sector and also the purpose of business
in Africa.

Following the release of the report, the foundation is carrying out more conferences and lectures on the topic. It’s in this light that the foundation forum set a date to hold a lecture on Africapitalism in Uganda and also potentially meet with the president of the country and discuss further on the topic.

Image by Makerere University

Image by Makerere University

Beyond his philanthropic ambitions, Tony Elumelu was also in Uganda visiting the staff and leadership of UBA Uganda and the governor. The UBA bank also recently opened a branch in Makerere University serving as one of the reasons to meet the Vice Chancellor of Makerere University.

UBA is also working on several projects with the government MDAs laying the foundation for meeting to discuss these projects among other things with President Museveni. This was, as well, a good opportunity for the successful applicants for the TEF programme to interact with the founder of the organization.

Uganda ranks higher on Tony Elumelu Foundation’s TEF entrepreneurship programme

In a session concluded last month, 126 Ugandan entrepreneurs emerged as successful applicants for the 4th cycle of the annual Tony Elumelu Foundation’s TEF entrepreneurship programme. The successful applicants emerged out of over 2,000 applications from Uganda.

From the statistics, Uganda had the third highest number of applications for the programme after Nigeria and Kenya. Mr Tony O. Elumelu said;

that the increasing number of applicants each year illustrates the strength and depth of entrepreneurial promise and commitment in Africa.

There was a near 50-50 split between male and female applications, reflecting the entrepreneurial ambition of Africa’s women. Agriculture was the leading sector among selected entrepreneurs at 30.5%, followed by technology (10.5%) and Education and training (9%).

Speaking about the selections for the year 2018, Mr Elumelu said;

The number and quality of applicants, 151,000 in total, was outstanding – it illustrates the strength and depth of entrepreneurial promise and commitment on our continent.

TEF CEO, Parminder Vir said;

Over the next nine months, the entrepreneurs will receive online training and mentoring and will use the skills acquired to develop business plans prior to receiving $5,000 in seed capital. This will bring TEF’s total Programme investment so far to $15 million in direct funding to entrepreneurs and $5.8 million in Programme & technology development and operations.

Following the conclusion of the conference in Uganda, the 126 lucky Ugandan applicants are more excited about the TEF programme and more entrepreneurs around East Africa are hoping to get a similar opportunity to host a TEF conference or two in the area of africapitalism and what it would mean for the African economy.


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Uganda showcases at Coffee and Tea EXPO in Russia, Taps into $2.5bn Market

Uganda showcases at Coffee and Tea EXPO in Moscow

Ugandan coffee in Russia – In an effort to broaden the reach and popularity of Uganda’s coffee in Russia, the Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA) in collaboration with the Embassy of Uganda showcased Ugandan local coffee varieties at the Coffee and Tea Expo in Moscow.

The UCDA team that represented Uganda at the Expo included board member Haji Ishak Lukenge and
Samson Mpiira Akankiza, the coffee sustainability manager at UCDA. The team participated in a cupping
event, which exposed the black gold of Uganda.

Uganda showcases at Coffee and Tea EXPO in Moscow

The annual event attracted coffee and tea lovers, consumers, buyers and other stakeholders in the industry from different countries.

The Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA) said in a statement;

It was a great platform for Uganda to showcase coffee and tea and to seek partnerships and business opportunities.

Ugandan coffee has been promoted in Russia in a bid to increase Uganda’s market share in one of the
country’s with the largest per capita coffee consumption.

According to the Russian Association of Tea and Coffee Manufacturers (RusTeaCoffee), the coffee market in Russia was worth $750m in 2001 but is now worth over $2.5b. It is estimated that every Russian consumes at least 1.7kg or more than 120 cups of coffee per year, making it a vibrant market for Ugandan exports.

Uganda showcases at Coffee and Tea EXPO in Moscow

Uganda showcases at Coffee and Tea EXPO in Moscow

Ugandan Coffee industry has been suffering from problems like low-grade coffee seedlings, low production and poor quality products for a while.

Most recently, some local farmers and coffee dealers have had discussions with the UCDA to find solutions to the industry problems and have a wider international market. The UCDA organization is making substantial effort to broaden the country’s international market.

The Government of Uganda is anticipating production of coffee in the country to increase to 20 million bags of coffee annually by 2030, which is expected to rack in revenues of between $1.5-2.2b in export earnings per year.



Export markets in the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and Russia shall play an important part in reaching the set goal.

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