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Unusual Entrepreneur Partners Ecobank; announces second cohort

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The Unusual Entrepreneurship Programme has entered into a strategic partnership with Ecobank Nigeria to provide all banking support and funding to the selected entrepreneurs in the 2019 cohort. 

Announcing the partnership in Lagos, Mr Valentine Ozigbo, Chairman of the Unusual Entrepreneur, thanked Ecobank management for the support. He stated that as exclusive bankers to the program, the entrepreneurs will be provided banking services and SME on-boarding support in their journey as entrepreneurs.

The Unusual Entrepreneur, the foremost faith-based entrepreneurship programme in Nigeria, will empower 250 smart men and women members of the Church from the entire Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos. These entrepreneurs will be awarded with prizes ranging from N50,000 to N1,000,000 per person. Apart from the funding, they will also be provided with mentorship, business training and other critical support they require to succeed long term.

Launched in 2018, the vision of the Unusual Entrepreneur is to be the pre-eminent faith-based entrepreneurship programme in Nigeria that unlocks the obstacles Nigerian entrepreneurs face as they grow their start-ups by equipping them with the necessary skills, support, training, mentorship and funding to build strong and sustainable businesses which will scale over time.

Commenting about the partnership, Managing Director, Ecobank Nigeria, Mr. Patrick Akinwuntan, affirmed the bank’s  support and noted that “the objective of Unusual Entrepreneur in providing funding and mentorship support resonates strongly with not just our drive for youth empowerment as a corporate social responsibility, but an opportunity for our SME desk to handhold these individuals to a time when they emerge successful business men and women, thereby helping with Nigeria’s economic development and job creation.

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To be eligible for the programme, applicants must meet the following criteria

  • Business must be a Nigerian or legal resident in Nigeria (Lagos).
  • Business must be for-profit
  • Applicants must be willing to attend all training and mentoring exercises organised by the programme
  • Applicants must be at least 18 years old.

The Unusual Entrepreneur is part of the program of Unusual Praise, started few years ago by the Catholic Church of Divine Mercy, and has quickly grown to become the biggest of its kind within the Catholic Community in Africa- with  explosive and spirit filled ministrations by megastar acts such as Chioma Jesus, Don Moen, Sinach, Nicole C Mullen, Olumide Dada, Mahalia, Mercy Chinwo, Sr. Agatha Ozah, Joe Praize and a plethora of globally recognised gospel stars in previous years.

This year’s edition promises to be an incredible night of praise and worship with Gospel Acts like Nathaniel Bassey, Panam Percy Paul, Chioma Jesus, Tope Alabi, Big Bolaji, Osinachi Nwachukwu, and many more you cannot afford to miss.  It will also feature our upcoming Catholic ministers and promises an unforgettable spiritual connection, and most importantly a refreshing and uplifting experience in the presence of God. 

Editor’s Note 

About Ecobank Nigeria Limited

Incorporated as a public limited liability company on October 7, 1986, Ecobank Nigeria Ltd is a subsidiary of Africa’s leading independent banking group, Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI). The Group employs 15,930 people in 40 different countries in over 940 branches and offices. Ecobank is a full-service bank providing wholesale, retail, investment and transaction banking services and products to governments, financial institutions, multinationals, international organizations, medium, small and micro businesses and individuals.

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With a larger African footprint than any other bank in the world operating in West, Central, East and Southern Africa, Ecobank is the only bank that spans 36 African countries yet operates a truly integrated African network. That is One unified integrated Ecobank Mobile Banking App, that works seamlessly across all 33 operating countries in Africa; One Ecobank Omni and Omnilite serving all Multinationals and SMEs in Africa; One Rapidtransfer app that breaks down country borders and allows the diaspora community send money directly to their loved ones, instantly and affordably across Africa; One Ecobank Online Banking platform that you can access easily whether you are in Abuja or Kinshasha.

Ecobank’s unique and largest pan-African platform is designed to help unlock the opportunities of the continent, for the continent, through standardization, fuelling regional integration, and trade and investment across borders.

Due to Ecobank’s sterling performance, it has been severally recognized; Most recently as ‘Best Retail Bank in Africa 2019’ at African Banker Awards; Most Admired Financial Services Brand in Africa 2019 by Brand Africa 100; Best Digital Bank in Africa – 2017 by Euromoney Awards; Best Retail Bank and Innovation in Banking both in 2018 by the African Banker Awards.

In November 2013, the Central Bank of Nigeria designated Ecobank Nigeria as systemically important to the economy.

For more information, visit http://www.unusualentrepreneur.com or send enquiries to info@unusualentrepreneur.com

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Breaking News: Customers Groan As Zenith Bank’s System Collapse

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Zenith Bank customers are currently in pains as they have been unable to get good service from the bank since the early hours of Saturday.

It was gathered that the bank is experiencing system collapse at the moment, even as customers are finding it very hard to withdraw or send money while other transactions with the bank have become estremely difficult.

According to some of the victims of the Zenith bank sudden system breakdown, the development became noticeable in the early hours of today at about 8: 45am and was yet to abate as the time of filling this report.

Some of the victims are seeing around the banks premises, especially ATM users lamenting their predicament.

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2021 NCOY: FIRSTBANK PARTNERS JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT NIGERIA, REITERATES COMMITMENT TO INNOVATION AND EDUCATION

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FirstBank

For 11 years, Nigeria’s premier and leading financial inclusion services provider, FirstBank of Nigeria Limited has partnered with Junior Achievement Nigeria (JAN) to host its annual flagship event; the National Company of the Year competition (NCOY), which convenes winners of the JA Company Regional Competitions across Nigeria to compete for the National Company of the Year Award.

 

This year, the event will bring together outstanding ‘student business teams’ across Nigeria to compete for prizes and an opportunity to represent the country at the national competition – JA African Company of the Year Competition (ACOY). The 2021 edition of the NCOY competition will be held virtually via Zoom meetings at 10am on Saturday, 27th November 2021. Interested participants are to register via the link https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZEtd-qvqz4pE90NXOHcy-tve6aEXpY_yYAE

 

The competition themed ‘Innovation with Grit’ will have 12 teams from 12 schools pitch their innovations to a team of 5 guests judges. The represented schools at the competition include: The Seer company from Alvana High School; Sonic Informatics company from Heritage Global Academy; Nexus Queens company from Queens School; JA Stars from Theological College of Northern Nigeria (TCNN); Amazing Amazon Students from Government Girls’ Secondary School, Abaji; KereTerra Company from Secondary School Etoi, Uyo and The Exploit thinkers from Taidob College.

 

Other teams competing include: Mystic Global Company from Rosa Mystica High School, Agulu; PetraMech Tech from Petra Schools; The Amazing Inventors from Government Secondary School Tudun Wada; Blue crystal company from Methodist Girls school and the Artisans from Igbobi College.

 

Judges at the event include: Oludolapo Adigun, Group Head, Retail Banking Lagos & West First Bank of Nigeria Limited; Chidimma Juliana Okparah, Project Management Consultant (PMIEF); Sheila Ojei, Head of Communications Jobberman; Gbenga Sesan, Executive Director of Paradigm Initiative and Simbo Olatoregun, Policy Programs Manager for Facebook in Africa. In attendance also is the Honourable Commissioner for Education Lagos State, Mrs. Folashade Adefisayo as a Special Guest.

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The 2021 National Company of the Year Program will also feature SPARK Competition. SPARK as an initiative of First Bank of Nigeria Limited, is an acronym for Start Performing Acts of Random Kindness. SPARK reiterates the Bank’s commitment to institutionalise kindness in Nigeria by encouraging and amplifying a culture of kindness.

 

The SPARK competition will feature 15 finalist schools across Nigeria, whose CSR projects align with the Bank’s Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability pillars of Education, Welfare and Health, Financial inclusion and Responsible Lending and Procurement.

 

Speaking on the event, the Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications, Folake Ani-Mumuney said “FirstBank’s partnership under its Future First initiative with JA Nigeria Company programme has positively impacted over 100,000 people in different locations across the country in preparing and teaching them how to generate wealth, effectively manage it and how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to the workplace. Our commitment to fostering entrepreneurial development amongst youths is mainly the driving force behind our support of the National Company of the Year (NCOY) and Africa Company of the Year (ACOY) competitions in past 11 years”.

 

According to the Executive Director, JAN, ‘’the National Company of the Year Company competition provides our students with a platform to show how innovative they are while displaying their dexterity and grit especially as it relates to creating sustainable business solutions to problems in their immediate community. The students have learned critical skills during the implementation of the Company Programme and we are proud to celebrate them as they compete in the National competition. I would like to specially appreciate FirstBank Nigeria for their continued support and belief in the boundless potential of young Nigerians’’.

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UBA Foundation Sensitises Staff, Customers on Mental Health Awareness, offers Therapies, Creative Opportunities, Giveaways

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UBA

In line with its commitment towards giving back and impacting lives, UBA Foundation – the corporate social responsibility arm of United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc – has kicked-off a week-long series of activities aimed at promoting mental health awareness for staff and customers starting with a panel session on Wellness at the Workplace.

Whilst studies revealed that over 19% of adults struggle with their mental health every year, a majority of those affected are reluctant to speak-out and seek help for fear of stigmatisation, UBA Foundation, through the panel discussion, sought to address the challenges that individuals are facing and how it has now become important to create consciousness and prioritise the general well-being of employees and clients.

UBA’s Group Managing Director, Kennedy Uzoka, delivered a good will message at the event emphasising the importance of wellness and mental health. He stressed the need for more organisations to ensure that the mental health of their staff and families are taken more seriously.

He said, “UBA has always engaged in a lot of ground-breaking initiatives and the issue of mental health is important to us. We have found that people do not want to talk about mental health because they think it is bad, but the truth is that you can only get good productive people when challenges like these are addressed and I am so happy that this has commenced here. “

The panel was moderated by the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, UBA Foundation, Bola Atta, who spoke about UBA’s goal to remain the best place to work. She noted that the bank is addressing these issues and championing the narrative that says that mental health issues shouldn’t be swept under the carpet.

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 “We want to create a workplace environment where people feel comfortable and encouraged to seek help when necessary, so that they can give the best of themselves in their respective roles. We hope to stomp out the stigma that keeps people suffering in silence and bridge the gap between mental health inclusivity, support and recovery in Africa,” Atta who is also UBA’s Group Head Corporate Communications, explained.

The panellists, UBA’s Group Head, Human Resources, Patricia Aderibigbe, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, BTH Therapy, Chris Abojei, Co-founder  Africa’s Health Matters Foundation, Vanessa  Adebayo and Angel Yinkore all agreed that wellness, especially at the workplace, has become a front burning issue and should be well addressed.

Atta announced the partnership with UBA Foundation and Inside Out as part of the weeklong activities to shine some light on mental health. Inside Out  aims at teaching youths to channel their feelings through art expression and photography. She added that staff members would be able to benefit from free therapy sessions from BHT Therapy and many wellness giveaways such as spa and fitness vouchers.

Another major highlight of the week will be an intimate discussion with the Founder, Genevieve Magazine, Betty Irabor, on Thursday, November 11th, where she will share insights around her personal journey and the realities of balancing life, family, and mental health.

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