FIRST Bank has partnered with JA Africa to organise the Company of the Year competition, Africa’s high school entrepreneurship competition.
A statement from the bank said the theme of the event which took take place in Lagos was ‘Fuelling Changemakers’.
It said the JA Africa Company of the Year competition which returned for the 12th year in a row, and the first in-person meeting post COVID-19, after two successful virtual competitions was JA Africa’s annual celebration of winning teams from the JA Company Programme.
In a statement, it said it was a programme which equipped 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 statement said, “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.”
According to the statement, FirstBank’s sponsored winners of the 2022 Junior Achievement Nigeria National Company of the Year competition – Green Apex from the International School, University of Lagos, would represent Nigeria in the JA Africa Company of the Year competition.
The Chief Executive Officer, JA Africa, Simi Nwogugu, said, “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.”
The Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications, FirstBank, Folake Ani-Mumuney, 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.”