Anzisha Prize – MasterCard Foundation for Entrepreneurial Fellowship for Africans

The Anzisha Prize, funded by the MasterCard Foundation, is an entrepreneurial fellowship for Africans aged 15-22 years old. The opportunity best fits young African entrepreneurs trying to grow a business, so if you have what it takes, then apply now!

Application deadline: November 30, 2021

Benefits of the Anzisha Prize for Entrepreneurial Fellowship

Over $140,000 is handed out annually in business support prize money for accepted African entrepreneurs within this scheme. The Anzisha Prize seeks to award young businesspeople who have developed and implemented innovative solutions to social challenges or started successful enterprises within their community.

The Anzisha Prize is a venture-building fellowship program that has successfully supported and championed very young entrepreneurs for over 10 years.

The fellowship is a three-year program that celebrates and rewards business growth.

During the course of the three years, the program will track the performance of the business and the entrepreneur. Businesses that show exemplary growth and initiative are rewarded with benefits and services such as short courses, cloud services, and cash stipends.

At the end of the second year, entrepreneurs will pitch their businesses and successes for a chance to win their share of prizes to the value $140 000.

The Grand Prizes are split into 4 categories

  • The Job Creation Prize
  • Revenue Growth Prize
  • Storytelling Prize
  • Integrating Systems and Processes Prize

At the end of the three-year fellowship, the fellows will graduate and join the Anzisha Prize alumni network.

Furthermore, the application timeline is as follows:

20 October 2021 – Applications Open
31 November 2021 – Applications Close
January – March 2022 – Phone Interviews, Assignments, and Due Diligence visits
April 2022 – Announcement of Top 26
August 2022 – Anzisha Prize Induction

Eligibility Criteria for Africans

Prior to applying, the following criteria must be met:

  1. You must be between 15 and 22 years old with an ID document or Passport to present as evidence. Anyone born before April 16, 1996 or after April 16, 2003 will not be considered.
  2. You must be a national of an African country with a business based in Africa for African customers/ beneficiaries.
  3. Your business must be up and running. The Anzisha Prize is not for great ideas or business plans – you must have already started, and be able to prove it! You have time to get started now and have tangible results to share before applications open.
  4. Your business, invention or social project can be in any field or industry (science and technology, civil society, arts and culture, sports, etc.). Any kind of venture is welcome to apply.
  5. Individuals who apply must be one of the founding members of a business (for example, 2 or 3 co-founders who started a business together). One person can apply for the Prize, on behalf of the team.

To be selected as one of the 12 Anzisha Fellows, your business or project will be judged on the following 5 criteria:

  • Already Running Venture: Is the venture established with customers and beneficiaries? Does the venture deliver value to said beneficiaries and customers?
  • Founder-led: Is the venture led and managed by the founder?
  • Impact: Has the venture demonstrated some impact already?
  • Scalability: If the venture is a for-profit business, does it already earn revenues and does it have potential increase revenues with the support of Anzisha? If the venture is a not-for-profit enterprise, does it already reach beneficiaries and does it have the potential to reach many more beneficiaries with support from Anzisha?
  • Job Creation: Has the venture created some jobs and has the potential to create more high quality jobs?

Meanwhile, to be selected as one of our Anzisha Fellows, you must demonstrate the two following qualities:

  • Venture leader: Are you the leader of your venture and do you drive both venture strategy and operations?
  • Commitment: Do you spend at least 20 hours a week or more on your business and will you continue to do so after selection?

How to Apply for the Prize

In order to start your application process, please download the Applications Guide attached here and also visit the official competition webpage for further information.

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