UN and Accenture Create Young African Entrepreneurship Platform


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The United Nations Development Program revealed plans for a Pan-African Entrepreneurship Portal Platform with Accenture South Africa called YAS! Portal-Platform. The program is designed for young African entrepreneurs with the objective to cultivate the ecosystem, thereby promoting mentorship, funding, information sharing and networking. The platform will be introduced to East, Southern, West African regions.

According to, Tomas Sales, UNDP Special Advisor for Private Sector, “YAS! (Youth for Africa and SDGs) is a much needed Pan African digital mechanism for youth entrepreneurs to access opportunities and contribute to the positive transformation of the continent through the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs are directed to ending poverty, protecting the planet and ensuring that people everywhere enjoy peace and prosperity.”

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The platform created to support the development and growth of youth entrepreneurship through four pillars categorized as Learning, Ecosystem Mapping, Challenges and Opportunities. According to ITNewsAfrica, the objectives of YAS! are to provide young African entrepreneurs with support services such as business development, develop an ecosystem for corporates, award funds to African youth, provide knowledge and function as a knowledge hub for virtual master classes.

“YAS! will better serve the private sector with innovation, supplier diversification and talent on the African continent and in parallel accelerate the growth of the entrepreneurship eco-system,” Sandiso Sibisi stated, Accenture Africa’s Open Innovation Lead. As attracting more awareness and resources for new entrepreneurs, start-ups, venture capitalists and multinational corporations is imperative to the success of this platform. Thus, the platform would be implemented on two levels. The first level will be entrepreneurs and start ups that want to open a profile in the platform. The second level is for private sector, donors, venture capitalist in search of start-ups.

“The YAS! platform, placed in the context of the YouthConnekt initiative, serves as a pan-African ‘one-stop solution’ to navigate the support services available in the African youth entrepreneurship ecosystem. This will help young people who are developing sustainable development goals-related business ideas, and harness the innovation potential of the continent,” explained Lamin Momodou Manneh, director of UNDP’s regional service center for Africa.
There is much optimism for this new platform as Accenture has had previous success with programs such as the Youth Business International. This program will enhance the capacity, impact and scale of its global network and provide 50,000 youth with entrepreneurial training.


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