The Unusual Entrepreneur, a faith-based entrepreneurship initiative by the Catholic Church of Divine Mercy, Lagos, has committed N40 million seed funding to 251 entrepreneurs across different walks of life, who are mostly start-ups, in its 2019 cohort.
The Chairman of the programme, Valentine Ozigbo, who made the disclosure at the grand finale event in Lagos recently, said: "The 2019 edition of Unusual Entrepreneur is focused on empowering as many entrepreneurs as we could afford, with the skill-set, funding, and mentorship they require to succeed in the world of business.
"The event will bring our entrepreneurs up-to-date information regarding Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century, Solving Funding Challenges, Sustainable Business Culture, among other things."
The event had over 500 entrepreneurs present, and featured master-class sessions anchored by proven business leaders in various sectors of the economy including- Founder and Executive Vice Chairman, CWG Plc, Austin Okere; Segment Head, SME, Ecobank, Emeka Agada; Founder/CEO, Nectar Beauty Hub, Beatrice Eneh; Best-Selling Author and Business Coach, Edirin Edewor and Dr. Emeka Osuji of the Lagos Business School, among others.
The recipients of the grants were selected from a poll of 650 applicants who are mostly members of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos. Other denominations of Christianity were also recipients.
The funding provided ranged from N50,000 to N1,000,000, following a thorough review of their business proposals by a select panel of judges. Winners of the fund would equally be mentored and receive the required training to ensure their long-term success.
The Parish Priest of Catholic Church of Divine Mercy, Monsignor Paschal Nwaezeapu, said: "The Unusual Entrepreneur being an arm of Unusual Praise is intended to equip the young entrepreneurs with requisite skills, mentorship and spiritual backing."