The Efe Martins Foundation
It’s our goal that we can acknowledge all the blessings and opportunities we have been given in life and reach out to people less fortunate than us.
We set up an endowment within the Efe Martins Foundation to help improve people’s incomes and quality of life. Working with some of Africa’s poorest communities that allow people to become self- sustaining.
These “Livelihood Programs” provide communities with access to capital and hands-on business training, empowering them to start small businesses. With greater incomes, people have more choices and that should put them one step ahead of the daily challenge to put food on their tables.
Efe Martins Foundation is ready to build capacity of entrepreneurs, focusing on regional development of entrepreneurs, particularly in growing ecosystems, across Africa.
Efe Martins Foundation was launched to provide targeted support to technology entrepreneurs in Nigeria & Africa at large to strengthen their ecosystems, expand their connections to business and opportunity, as well as improve their capacity to manage growth and investment.
Other Intensive training programs like the Efe Martins Entrepreneurship Program, have ambitious targets to support to create jobs, and add to the revenues of the African economy.
Entrepreneurship networks across the continent also provide opportunities for ecosystem development, capacity building and large-scale expertise and knowledge transfer.
Innovation Gathering connect entrepreneurs to each other, and growth opportunities to exchange ideas, collaborate and leverage the network of support to develop their enterprises.
The Efe Martins Foundation will build on these initiatives, combining an innovative funding model that allows entrepreneur’s greater flexibility, with targeted training and mentorship for enterprise development and growth.
Many young people with good business ideas struggle to survive on a day-to-day basis. We propose the Entrepreneur Fund Program (EFP) to alleviate this struggle by equipping these entrepreneurs with the knowledge and skills they need to grow a business and create jobs and also plugging their capital requirements to finance the business.
The Efe Martins Entrepreneur Fund Program (EFP) is a standardized holistic tool that supports entrepreneurs, financially and non-financially, in building their business by providing affordable and accessible financing, entrepreneur training and personal development support, access to business experts and mentors and eventually creating an enabling and sustainable ecosystem.
The main goal of the EFP is to provide micro and small to medium enterprises with support to ensure that they are investor ready and are able to successfully de-risk their businesses and attract the right types of investors at the appropriate time.
The key success indicator for the Efe Martins EFP is the creation of sustainable employment and tailored solutions to developmental challenges in the continent of Africa through building successful businesses.
The financial support, in the form of a
convertible loan, is provided to meet both operational costs and capital expenses. The non-financial support will offer entrepreneurship training, covering technical skills (e.g., finance and financial reporting, marketing, business plan development etc.), personal development, mentorship and networking.
The EFP will be governed by the program terms and a board of advisors comprising representatives from private & public sector and other institutions that may enter the program plans. In order to preserve the spirit and intent of the Efe Martins EFP and should it be in line with the President’s view we would also suggest a high-level advisory during the implementation phase.
The fund will utilize appropriate technologies and innovative policies such as the block chain to ensure transparency and work with existing startup hubs, tertiary education institution incubators or accelerators or impact investment funds, collectively.
The EFP’s responsibilities will be to facilitate the implementation of the financial and nonfinancial components of the program. Applicants must join the Efe Martins EFP through a startup hub, tertiary education institution incubator or accelerator, impact investment fund.
After the first level evaluation to ensure that the candidates meet the criteria and requirements for the EFP. Once approved, the entrepreneur will be assigned a mentor and will be expected to work with our team, which have been approved to provide structured non-financial support for the EFP, throughout the duration of the funding period.
Progress is measured and reviewed by a review committee. All the successful beneficiaries of the EFP will be required to mentor incoming EFP program participants.
OUR TARGETS: Any male and/or female
entrepreneur who is a citizen of any African country or of African heritage in the first generation or second-generation foreign citizenship with a business that mainly operates in Africa.
The Program aims to provide equal opportunity to all the potential participants regardless of gender and age, and the statistics will be tracked within the different categories of the beneficiaries.
Allocation of funds within the program will be further designed to focus on groups that are in need of more support for example women and youths.
Businesses that clearly contribute to the achievement of the United Nations (SDGs) Sustainable Development Goals or the High 5s.
Businesses at different stages of development, i.e. ideation, pilot, pivot or growth, which are yet to raise their Series A. While we support micro and small businesses, we are looking for businesses that have the potential to grow and offer decent employment to employees.
Each business will receive financial and non- financial resources sufficient for its needs, but all the businesses will use the same standardized application form. The ticket sizes will be grouped to facilitate ease of application processing.
The financial support of the Efe Martins EFP is a convertible loan administered by a broad range of conventional and non conventional local finance institutions (i.e. incubators, accelerators, impact investment funds etc. and paid through banks, mobile money etc., as is relevant) on behalf of the EFP.
Financial officer will assign their internal fund managers to monitor the financial performance of the business and advise as needed.
The entrepreneurs receive the convertible loan over an initial period of 12 months to assist with the financing of operating and capital expenses of the entrepreneurs’ business.
Each entrepreneur will be required to apply for financial resources to cater for an initial 12-month period. The application is made and approved once every 12 months and disbursed quarterly in the initial years.
The frequency of the review process is eventually reduced in line with an increased rapport with the entrepreneur and business and establishment of their track record of reliability and consistency.
The disbursement of funds will depend on the achievement set by the review committee for the entrepreneur and the business. At the end of each 12-month period, the entrepreneur will have the opportunity to enter another round of the program with a renewed agreement, in line with the development of theb businessand the entrepreneur.
Each entrepreneur has a maximum of a single entry into the Program and special cases would be considered as and when they arise. This is to safeguard the fund from being abused.
Interestedcandidates will apply for the EFP through our website. The evaluation process for each application will entail a rigorous analysis of the business conducted by our team.
There are two key reasons for including a mentoring component. The first being, entrepreneurs with good mentoring support are more likely to succeed.
While in a different context, surveys in the US show that as much as 70% of small businesses that receive mentoring survive more than five years – double the survival rate of non-mentored businesses.
Many successful entrepreneurs too have spoken about the importance of mentoring in shaping their success.The second reason is the criticality of the financial support in the Efe Martins EFP.
The involvement of mentors will enable them to offer clear insights into the performance of the entrepreneur/business and participate more effectively in the review process.
The Efe Martins EFP will provide every participant with a mentor who will advise and guide the participant throughout his/her journey. The mentor is someone willing and able to spend his/her time and expertise to guide the development of another person on a voluntary basis.
Ultimately, their role is to help the mentee set and meet their goals. He/she can share information about his/her own career path, as well as provide guidance, motivation, emotional support, role modeling and access to his/her network.
A database of experts will be available on the EFP platform. This database will showcase experts from around the world in a user- friendly, searchable format.
The entrepreneurs will see the profile of the expert, the cost, if any, to them, the ratings and reviews of other entrepreneurs.
The EFP will build up this database by tapping into an existing range of programs that already provide such support, i.e., corporate volunteer programs.
The Africa development Bank, is working to map corporate volunteer programs and this can provide the basis for the expert database. The mentors and participants could also be part or the expert database if they have relevant skills that meet the selection criteria.
Business leaders around the world acknowledge that the entrepreneur and his/her team are a critical driver of success for a company.
It is becoming increasingly clear that the critical factor here is not people’s experiences or level of intelligence alone, but also their mindset. Mindset is the established set of attitudes held by someone, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits.
They spend their time documenting their intelligence or talent instead of developing them. They also believe that mostly talent and luck create success – effort has lesser role. Real world observation shows this in incorrect. In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work – brains and talent are just the starting point.
This view creates a love for learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment. By enabling entrepreneurs to shift or further develop a growth mindset, the Efe Martins EFP can help unleash their full potential.
With the fast-paced and growth oriented culture of entrepreneurship, people can forget to take care of their own personal well-being. Research indicates a high level of mental health issues for entrepreneurs and that loss of focus, loss of passion, or experiencing burnout on the part of founders often leads to startup collapse.