Starting your Journey

When you submit your business or idea to this Award, you embark on a journey that puts you at the center of a community of entrepreneurs and mentors in Africa and around the world.

We are dedicated to helping you improve your business idea and achieve your goals of launching and scaling your business in Africa.

You can learn exactly how to submit a proposal by watching the video on the right (or below if you are on your mobile).

Stay updated on our latest news by visiting the Award website regularly. The timeline and other important headlines may change throughout the year.

How does the African Entrepreneurship Award work?

The African Entrepreneurship Award provides mentoring to all eligible African entrepreneurs with an existing business or just an idea for one, and a chance to share in the $1 Million Award. 

The Award Journey is made up of 4 rounds of mentoring. It starts by you taking a few minutes to submit an idea for Round 1.

Once you hit the submit button, you begin a journey with real entrepreneurs who have been where you are today.

You may be asking yourself why submit your golden idea to the African Entrepreneurship Award. What are you getting out of this?

We are not seeking to capitalize on ideas. Rather, we seek businesses that create jobs and improve lives in Africa. We want to empower you to plan, launch and scale your business or idea.

We provide you with mentoring to help build a sustainable business that employs people, improves your economy, and impacts lives in Africa.

Round 1

Business ideas most needed in the region

When you start the journey, we will ask you questions about your business idea to get to know you and your idea’s relevance to the region. Once you submit your idea, our community of Regional Mentors will provide specific feedback directly to you via the website on your idea’s potential to impact your region.

During Round 1, you must convince the Regional Mentors that you understand the needs in your region and that your idea meets those needs.

We will share the Regional Mentors’ overall ranking of your idea with you at the end of Round 1. If your idea ranks in the top of “Most Needed in Your Region,” we will notify you that you are progressing to Round 2, “Most Likely to Succeed Across Africa.”

Round 2

Business ideas most likely to succeed across Africa

In Round 2 of your journey, we ask you more questions about your customers, competition, and scalability across Africa. Pan-African Mentors who are business leaders will give you feedback to enable your business proposal to succeed across Africa, equipping you to be successful on a broader scale.

During Round 2, you must convince the Pan-African Mentors that you know your potential customers’ needs; that you are able to communicate the idea; that you are well aware of your competition; and that you can visualize or explain the idea through visual or auditory means e.g.) a video, graphic, presentation, sound file, etc.

We will share the Pan-African Mentors’ overall ranking of your idea with you at the end of Round 2. If your idea ranks in the top of “Most Likely to Succeed across Africa,” we will notify you that you are progressing to Round 3, “Most Significant and Sustainable in Africa.”

Round 3

Business Ideas most significant & sustainable in Africa

In Round 3 , we will ask you more questions about your financial projections, leadership team, advisors, and barriers to success. Global Mentors are experienced entrepreneurs and venture capitalists from all over the world will further guide you on your journey. Through mentorship and one-on-one dialogue, they will give you feedback to enable your business proposal to be more significant and sustainable.

During Round 3, you must convince the Global Mentors that you understand the risks you are facing. These include leadership gaps, advisor needs, political barriers, customer constraints, and financial risks. During Round 3, Global Mentors will coach you privately via the website on how to improve your Executive Summary. It is a fantastic tool reusable in all of your future funding efforts and pitches.

We will share the Global Mentors’ overall ranking of your idea with you at the end of Round 3. If your idea ranks in the top of “Most Significant and Sustainable in Africa,” we will notify you that you are progressing to the Final Round, Presidential Jury. (NOTE: We will confirm Presidential Jury Round participation after an onsite visit by an African Entrepreneurship Award team member.)

Presidential Round

Business Ideas with most plausible and probable impact

The Presidential Jury is comprised of distinguished business leaders and entrepreneurs who have created and/or scaled businesses on five continents. Entrepreneurs who make it to the Presidential Round will present live to the Presidential Jury in Morocco. Travel and local housing is sponsored by the Award. If unable to travel, they are still eligible to win and will have a time to present live via a video session.

Finalists will present their business idea and take live questions in a private setting in Morocco. Before presenting, finalists receive individual, live coaching by African and Global Boot Camp Coaches. This helps prepare finalists several days before their live presentation to the Jury. Finalists receive a notification early enough so travel and visa plans can be made.

If your idea is one of the Final Winners, you will continue your journey of mentoring with a customized post-award plan designed to help you plan, launch, and scale your business.

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