Total Petroleum Ghana Limited has held a project pitching programme for 16 finalists of its second edition of the ‘Startupper of the year’ challenge.
Project pitching is the final stage for participants before the awards day which is slated for March, 1, 2019.
The project, which is an initiative of the Total Group, aims at supporting business creation and development in African countries and the rest of the world.
The projects of the finalists spanned health, sanitation, deforestation, food and nutrition, software, education, and agribusiness, among other things.
Ten judges drawn from the academia, entrepreneurship, winner of the first edition, and Mr Eric Fanchini, Managing Director of Total Petroleum Ghana Limited, questioned finalists after each made a 10 minutes presentation on their products.
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The project was opened to entrepreneurs aged 35 and below whose projects were innovative, had societal and community impact, feasible and had development potential.
The Human Resource Manager of Total Petroleum Ghana and Project Coordinator for the Startupper, Mr Bright Dokosi, said a total of 1,197 applications were received over a period of five weeks, out of which 481 were selected and 100 shortlisted.
Of the number, 16 finalists were selected.
Mr Dokosi added that although each of the 55 countries were allocated 15 slots, Ghana got 16 finalists after it recorded a tie.
He indicated that an estimated GH¢1.3 million was budgeted for the project from its inception to the final stage.
He announced that all finalists would receive a certificate and publicity while the winner would receive GH¢90,000 cash prize, GH¢ 54,000 and GH¢36,000 for the second and third winners respectively in addition to a mentorship and coaching programme.
Mr Fanchini in a remark said the Startupper, which was first launched in 2015, was initiated under the company’s corporate social responsibility which aimed at providing assistance to bold innovative young entrepreneurs in Africa.
“This is done by helping the boldest and most innovative entrepreneurs carry out their projects by offering them financial support, huge visibility and coaching,” he stated.
“Throughout our work, we engage with local partners, customers and other stakeholders. We are, therefore, attentive to what is happening in the communities where we are located,” he added.