MHub together with Her Liberty have extended their entrepreneurship challenge in which six young entrepreneurs in Malawi is expected to win MK20 million.
The two month extension is meant to give a chance for more young people to apply with their bankable business ideas.
Dubbed the “What Will Do with K20 Million Challenge”, the competition seeks to apply innovation and entrepreneurship as a catalyst for socio-economic development, job creation and youth empowerment.
MHub Chief Executive Officer, Rachel Sibande disclosed that seeks to identify and support innovative local business ideas that can create social impact in communities and foster job creation.
The challenge started in March 2017 and will receive applications up to 31st July 2017.
“The overall objective of the challenge is to enable entrepreneurs in Malawi to be key drivers of the economy. Through the contest, young small and medium enterprises stand a chance to boost their capital with a total of MK20 million and enhance their knowledge in business and financial management through an intensive one week training for the winners,” Sibande said.
According to the CEO, the criteria for the winning entrepreneurship pitches includes business concept, strategy, value proposition, quality of the product, financial soundness and social returns.
Sibande further stated that the “What Will Do with K20 Million Challenge” was designed to respond to the problem of unemployment and poverty which Malawi’s youthful population is grappling with.
Currently, 80% of Malawi’s over 17 million population is made up of young people below 35 years of age.
According to the National Statistical Labour Force, the rate of unemployment hovers at 21 percent and affects this youth population the most.
The challenge received support from Standard Bank which has pledged to invest MK10 million (U$14,000) as seed capital to kick-start the challenge.
The MK20 million seed capital is to kick-start six business ideas from young entrepreneurs who will emerge winners at the challenge.
MHub is Malawi’s first innovation hub and incubator for emerging entrepreneurs.
The hub nurtures emerging innovators and entrepreneurs to build sustainable business solutions.
Her Liberty is an organisation that works to empower and mentor socially disadvantaged girls and women.
It aims to equip and train them to be self-reliant and economically independent.
Her Liberty works with a bigger regional network on youth-related issues pertaining to youth development and entrepreneurship under a network called AfriYAN (African Youth and Adolescent Network).