The Federal government is set to launch a re-designed Youth Enterprise With Innovation in Nigeria, YouWiNConnect! programme, the Finance ministry said Thursday.
The YouWin programme, initiated by the administration of former president Goodluck Jonathan in 2011 as part of the government’s job creation initiatives, provides grants to Nigerians to start small businesses each year.
Earlier in June 2016, the Federal Government through the ministry of finance had said that it would consult with beneficiaries and other concerned parties on the restructuring and refocusing of the multi-billion Naira Youth Enterprise with Innovation in Nigeria (YouWin) programme, with the objective of injecting new ideas for its sustainability.
A statement released Thursday by Salisu Dambatta, Director of Information at the Ministry, said a weekly print media enterprise education programme designed to assist entrepreneurs start, plan and grow their businesses would be launched on Sunday.
The programme, the statement said, would be launched by the Youth Enterprise With Innovation in Nigeria (YouWiN!Connect). It added that the publication would be syndicated in five national newspapers on Sundays and Wednesdays.
“Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun noted that the weekly editorial would showcase entrepreneurship as a job and wealth creation option, for young people adding that versions for Radio and Television would be launched when arrangements are concluded,” the statement said.
Since inception, according to the statement, the programme has midwifed 3,900 enterprises.
The statement explained further that a formal review of the programme undertaken by the Ministry of Finance found that, whilst successful, at the initial stage of enterprise development, the Youwin programme needed enhancement to ensure sustainability.
It added that the findings suggested that funding should be combined with an increased focus on enterprise education to better prepare entrepreneurs in areas such as accessing bank finance, book keeping, accounting, marketing and tax filing.
“This has influenced the redesign to YouWiN!Connect, which takes YouWiN! to the next level,” the statement said, adding that the Minister described YouWiN!Connect as “a multi-media enterprise education initiative that will provide the tools and skills required to support the emergence of the next generation of successful Nigerian-owned enterprises across the nation,” it said.
Explaining further, the finance ministry said the weekly publication would focus on sharing information and advice from entrepreneurs and technical experts to inspire, encourage and support young entrepreneurs to run sustainable businesses.
Mrs. Adeosun, the statement noted, also emphasised that practical advice and information will be provided on the technical, legal and financial aspects of running a business in the YouWiN!Connect Academy section. The overall aim of YouWiN!Connect is to develop the next generation of Nigerian business leaders, fully equipped to compete on the global stage.
Meanwhile, YouWiN!Connect has also set up an advisory board comprising experts in different areas of business and entrepreneurship, who would answer questions from members of the public weekly.
“Members of the board include the Finance Minister, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun; the Minister of State, Industry, Trade and Investment, Mrs. Aisha Abubakar; the founder and C.E.O of House of Tara International and pioneer of the bridal make-up profession in Nigeria, Mrs. Tara Fela-Durotoye; Former Banker and current MD/CEO of L & Z Integrated Farms, Alhaji M.D. Abubakar,” the statement said.
“Others are Mr. Sunday Egede and Mr. David Chukwuma Ojei, founders of the Prince Ebeano Supermarket chain; the founder and Managing Director of Sankore Investments and Venture Capitalist, Mrs. Titi Odunfa Adeoye. The Managing Director of the new Development Bank of Nigeria is also on the advisory board.”