Access Bank (Ghana) Plc has brought to a close the first edition of its Business Startup Challenge, with the top-three finalists receiving a share of GH¢30,000 cash and GH¢20,000 worth of business insurance cover each from the bank.
Other prizes include a GH¢30,000 consulting package each from Platinum Africa Solutions, six months gold subscriptions each from OZE, free websites for the first five finalists and a two-month silver subscription for all the remaining seven finalists, also from OZE.
Through its ‘W’ initiative and in partnership with Platinum Africa Solutions, Access Bank launched the five-week challenge aimed at supporting young Ghanaian startup businesses with creative ideas, an opportunity to showcase their ingenuity through their business proposals and rewarding the most innovative, feasible ideas.
Out of over 10,000 applicants, 30 young startups were shortlisted into the five-week challenge. Participants went through a boot-camp session wherein they engaged in business workshops and advisory services to equip them to remain relevant and above any competition.
In his welcome address, the Managing Director of Access Bank, Olumide Olatunji, explained the bank’s rationale behind the Business Startup Challenge. “Knowing very well that funding, inadequate planning and management skills are among the top challenges startups face, we chose to reward participants who reached the final 30 to go through some of these vital processes through a boot-camp session – where they were engaged in business workshops and advisory services to equip them to remain relevant and above their competition.”
Mr. Olatunji reinforced the bank’s commitment to SMEs and encouraged the winners to digitise their businesses so as to remain relevant in this era of digitalisation.
“Though the challenge has officially ended, you can always reach out to us for all your SME and banking needs. Access Bank has dedicated branches and a portal on its website, as ready resource centres where customers can walk in or log-on for business support. I also want to encourage you to digitise your business, it’s one sure way to excel in this era of digitalisation,” he advised.
The ultimate winners of the Business Startup Challenge were Zenobia Asmah, CEO of Zenags Organics; Amina Mumuni, CEO Amishea Company Ltd.; and Sherifatu Yakubu, CEO Dawa Plus, in first, second and third positions respectively.
Operating from 53 business locations across the country, Access Bank continues to build solid long-term relationships with customers based on trust, digital innovations, good customer service and transparency. The bank has over the years developed a deep understanding of its customers, delivering excellent services and empowering them to achieve more through financial education.