First Bank has partnered with Junior Achievement (JA) Africa on Company of the Year (COY) Competition, Africa’s largest high school entrepreneurship competition/ scheduled to take place in Lagos, Nigeria, from December 7 to 9, 2022, with the theme, “Fueling Changemakers.”
The Company of the Year (COY) competition, which returns for the 12th year in a row and the first in-person meeting post-COVID, after two successful virtual competitions, is JA Africa’s annual celebration of winning teams from the JA Company Programme. The programme equips senior secondary school level students with the entrepreneurial skillset and mindset to solve problems in their communities by launching a business venture and unleashing their entrepreneurial spirit.
The young entrepreneurs who compete at JA Africa’s COY go through qualifying competitions at national and sub-national levels, competing against thousands of youth startups to qualify for the regional competition. This programme transitions them into employment and transforms them into employers. Having emerged as national winners, they will represent their countries on the continental stage where they have the arduous task to impress a panel of international business professionals who serve as judges.
First Bank’s sponsored winners of the 2022 Junior Achievement Nigeria (JAN) National Company of the Year (NCOY) Competition, Green Apex, from the International School, University of Lagos, will represent Nigeria in the JA Africa COY competition.
“Given the increasingly complex set of global challenges facing young people around the world from unemployment to climate change and food shortage, we focus on equipping our students to be solution providers who bring about positive change within their communities while developing businesses that generate wealth.
“Our students have demonstrated great resilience and innovation in grappling with these challenges and I am extremely proud of all of them. I am also deeply grateful to all our sponsors who stayed with us throughout the pandemic period and contributed greatly towards making this a live event again,” said Simi Nwogugu, JA Africa’s CEO.
Speaking on the forthcoming COY competition, Folake Ani-Mumuney, Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications, First Bank, said: “The 2022 Junior Achievement Company of The Year competition remains another viable opportunity to promote the entrepreneurship skills, spirit and talent innate in school children, across Africa. We commend Junior Achievement Africa on the COY initiative as it serves as an avenue to expose participants to inter-cultural values and traditions that will foster the unity of the continent.
“We wish all participants, particularly the Nigerian representative, Green Apex from the International School, University of Lagos, the best as learnings from every initiative could solve critical problems facing mankind as we collectively make the world a better place.”
This year, nine student startups representing Eswatini, Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe will put their business acumen to the test as they present the achievements of their businesses in numerous formats to win the prestigious title of JA Company of the Year and other amazing prizes from the sponsors. The highest among the prizes at stake will be the opportunity to represent the African region at the Ralph de la Vega Global Entrepreneurship Competition, which will bring together COY winners from the six regions where JA Worldwide operates to compete for awards, $15,000, educational opportunities, and more.
The 2022 JA Africa COY Competition is made possible by the generous support of Headline sponsors: FedEx, Citi Foundation and PMIEF; Platinum sponsors: Bloomberg, Johnson & Johnson, Delta Air Lines and First Bank of Nigeria Limited; Gold sponsors: Tomorrow Foundation, Nascon, GB Foods and Rise, who by supporting this competition are demonstrating their commitment to job creation and youth empowerment on the African continent.
For more information, visit: www.ja-africa.org/coy2022