7Up, one of Nigeria’s foremost carbonated soft drinks brands, has continued its avowed passion to equip young Nigerian leaders, leveraging quality global education, as it announces the 13th winner of its Harvard Business School (HBS) MBA Scholarship.
Instituted in 2010, Oreoluwa Agunbiade, a lawyer turned management consultant, is the recipient of the fully funded MBA scholarship for the 2023/2024 session.
The scholarship is awarded each year by Seven-Up Bottling Company to a Nigerian resident in Nigeria who must have been admitted to HBS for an MBA programme but is unable to fund it.
Norden Thurston, SBC’s chief marketing director, explained that the 7Up HBS Scholarship was launched in 2010 by Faysal El-Khalil, chairman of SBC, in commemorating the 50th anniversary of the business based on his passion “to raise and inspire a generation of young Nigerian leaders by leveraging quality global education that breeds and equips them with the right mindset.”
According to Thurston, the 7Up HBS Scholarship has already created a pool of young business leaders in the political economy of Nigeria who are driving innovation and change in diverse sectors for a better society.
He further highlighted that a key part of this initiative’s next step would be establishing an Alumni community that will have all past recipients who are doing amazing things and adding value to society all come together to see how they can further inspire the next generation of young leaders and see opportunities to give back collectively.
Commenting on the 7UP HBS scholarship, Ziad Maalouf, managing director of SBC said: “As an organisation that strives for excellence, diversity and inclusion, we are pleased to welcome Ms Oreoluwa Agunbiade to the 7UP Harvard Business School family.
“I have no doubt that you will follow the tradition of hard work and excellence that has been the hallmark of previous recipients of this prestigious scholarship in one the world’s iconic business schools.
“We were swayed in awarding you this scholarship by what you are already doing to impact your environment and our hope is that you are able to return and impact Nigeria by insight and learnings gained”.
Agunbiade in return, pledged to use the education and training received to further the cause of women’s empowerment by setting up an impact fund to assist female-owned businesses in Africa to thrive.