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Herconomy doubles cash prize for enterprise challenge

Herconomy doubles cash prize for enterprise challenge

Herconomy, a female-focused fintech start-up award female entrepreneurs for their innovative business solutions and ideas doubled its cash prize for its 2023 Enterprise Challenge.

Herconomy awarded the winner of its enterprise challenge N1.5 million which was doubled by Nkiru Achukwu Ayemere, CEO of Zephans.

This was made known during its annual conference at the British High Commission, Ikoyi, themed ‘Leveraging Technology to Enhance Financial Services for Women’.

The Herconomy Enterprise Challenge is a yearly enterprise challenge for women entrepreneurs. Formerly known as the AGS Tribe, Herconomy has been instrumental in funding women-owned SMEs in Nigeria via the Enterprise Challenge, effectively boosting female and youth entrepreneurship in the country.

This year, Juliet Ejovwokoghene Eguolo, creative director at TIPIN Recycle, a social enterprise emerged as the winner amongst the 12 finalists and carted away with a total of N3 million naira.

Eguol, a second-time applicant of the grant and an environmental advocate based in Delta state innovatively reuse waste materials such as tyres, carton, wood pallets and sacks to make eco-friendly products and furniture for homes and office use.

“I have followed Herconomy for years and the enterprise challenge process was amazing, it gave room for growth, improvement and learning. I have learned through the challenge and it has reshaped my business and life.

“Winning the grant is our major milestone for this year because It will enable us to set up our showroom/gallery and production center, this will increase visibility on what we do and produce. Putting us at the center of furniture making business in Delta state,” she said.

She said the grant will help train youths in Delta state that have shown interest in waste to wealth, “As a former road sweeper in Delta state, who saw the need to change the narrative on waste and Environmental degradation, my goal is to add value by redefining waste to create wealth.”

The conference had an array of speakers including Catriona Wendy Campbell Laleng, the first female British High Commissioner to Nigeria, who spoke about the impact of African women on the continent.

On the panel funding your startup: “bootstrap to scale”, founders and CEO who have diverse experience in funding and bootstrapping gave insight into their journey encouraging other female entrepreneurs present.

Also, Affiong Williams, founder and CEO of Reel Fruits, an organic food brand in Nigeria spoke on other efficient ways entrepreneurs can get investment.

She said that instead of going for big investments she started to do milestone investments, like launching a new line or getting new equipment and getting people to invest in things like this was more efficient, especially because of her track record.

“It was easier to make money this way, as it was more realistic and made people have more trust in me,” Williams said

Jessica Anuna, CEO Klasha, encouraged entrepreneurs to be economically sound, and prudent and have a good business model to attract investors.

“Have a business model that makes sense and shows profitability by increasing your growth margin and revenue,” Annaba said.

Read also: Visa Foundation commits $5m to support African women entrepreneurs

Nkiru Achukwu Ayemere, CEO of Zephans and Co also pointed out the importance of bookkeeping and encouraged small businesses to look within their network for who can help with such processes.

Herconomy also honored women at its award and gala night-themed “fairytale ball” held on March 31, at Civic Center VI, Lagos, the concluding part of its two-day event held to recognise and award women that have achieved great fits.

Owen Omogiafor, CEO of Transcorp Group, Confidence Staveley, CEO of Cyberhq, Ara Sadiq, manager of Advisory Services Women World Banking, Folake Soetan, CEO, Ikeja Electric and Bukunmi Adeaga-Ilori popularly known as Kie-kie all received awards for their exceptional fits in their various sectors.

Popular artists like Chike and several others serenaded the beautiful ladies at the event, the event was anchored by Olive Mordi.