For immediate release
Ecobank collaborates with IITA to train and support 16,000 youths on agripreneurship
The partnership will also develop a youth-focused agribusiness finance model
Ibadan, Nigeria, March 10, 2023 – Ecobank, through a collaboration with the Nigeria-based CGIAR center International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), will provide training and support services to 16,000 youths in Nigeria.
This collaborative initiative known as Youth Empowerment and Capacity Building in Agribusiness targets youth between the ages of 18-40 years across Nigeria in aquaculture, horticulture, poultry, and value addition.
The collaboration is an outcome of discussions from the Investment Network Forum organized by the IITA Youth in Agribusiness office to increase investment and financing opportunities for startups and established agribusinesses. Banks and financial institutions often look at youths and their agribusinesses as a high-risk group. However, Ecobank champions youth agribusiness financing and will partner with IITA to provide additional streams of funding. This collaboration presents a good milestone towards developing agribusiness financing models and products geared at youth-led agricultural enterprises.
IITA, through its technical capacity and experience, will expose the youths to the latest innovations across the focus value chain. The training opportunities will provide them with agribusiness skills, which would help them to develop bankable business plans for funding through a credit product that will be developed by Ecobank. This will allow them to develop technical and soft skills to successfully run their businesses, reduce risks, and increase chances of success. The project would be implemented through three components: sensitization through value chain-focused training, practical training, and finally access to markets and finance. The three components will follow strict selection criteria to ensure that only committed and serious agripreneurs are selected.
About IITA, www.iita.org
The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) is a not-for-profit institution that generates agricultural innovations to meet Africa’s most pressing challenges of hunger, malnutrition, poverty, and natural resource degradation. Working with various partners across sub-Saharan Africa, we improve livelihoods, enhance food and nutrition security, increase employment, and preserve natural resource integrity. IITA is a member of CGIAR, a global agriculture research partnership for a food secure future.
Ecobank Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of the Ecobank Group, is a major player in the distribution of financial services in Nigeria, leveraging digital platforms including Ecobank Mobile App and USSD *326#, Ecobank Online, Ecobank OmniPlus, Ecobank Omnilite, EcobankPay, Ecobank RapidTransfer, ATMs, POS, and an extensive distribution network of over 250 branches and over 60,000 agency banking locations.
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