Three entrepreneurs bag prize money at the Windhoek edition of the OM SEED initiative
Old Mutual Namibia together with Launch Namibia, the Financial Literacy Initiative (FLI), and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Accelerator Lab, awarded three entrepreneurs from Windhoek with their share of N$85000.
During the award ceremony that took place on Thursday evening, Ndapewa Teressius of the Connect Africa App walked away with the first prize of N$50,000. Teressius could not hide her excitement when she was announced as the overall winner of the Windhoek edition of the Old Mutual Sustainable, Economic & Empowerment Drive (OM SEED) initiative.
“The Connect Africa app provides good support to the visual and hearing-impaired members of our society by enabling them to access essential services independently by turning images into sound. Through the app, they will be able to study at institutions of higher learning, participate at conferences and meetings without sign language interpreters, conduct banking services on their phone and so much more. The prize money will help us to add more features on the app and provide training within our 14 regions.”
Johannes Nawa of Community Bakery came in second place and won N$25 000. “I will use the money to get a better place for my bakery that will enable me to start using electricity instead of wood when I bake.”
Diana Nakuumbe, who produces Eembe Jam, came in third place and won N$10 000. “With the money I have won, I will buy a pulping machine along with spending money to better market myself.”
Mufaro Nesongano, Manager: Communications and Old Mutual Foundation highlighted that “a little under a month ago we launched OM SEED and thereafter our partner Launch Namibia travelled to the various communities in Windhoek, Keetmanshoop, and Oshakati to sensitise them about OM SEED. When we closed off our entries on 22 July we received over 800 applications from the three participating towns”.
“It was thus humbling to hear the various ideas pitched from our entrepreneurs in business sectors such as pig farming, poultry, general dealer shops, technological apps, wellness services, beauty and hair products, and agricultural produce. OM SEED has highlighted the need for initiatives that are aimed at our grassroots business,” he said.
During the Windhoek edition, entrepreneurs underwent business, financial, entrepreneurship, and leadership training. During the pitches, the importance of such training came out very visibly and showed how critical it is in enabling entrepreneurs in upscaling their businesses.
The winners will be incubated for a three-month period to assist them in utilising their training and capital in the most effective way to better position their businesses in the market.
In conclusion Iyaloo Ailonga, the Acting Secretariat Manager for the Financial Literacy Initiative said “we want to congratulate the individuals that brought us all together – the OM SEED Windhoek winners for 2022. You have shown hard work, dedication, and commitment to realise your dreams through your pitches, and we are excited to see how your business will grow in the future”.
The next town’s shortlisted candidates to receive training will be Keetmanshoop on 10 and 11 August, with Oshakati being slated to take place on 17 and 18 August.
L-R: Mufaro Nesongano, Old Mutual Manager: Communications and Foundation, Iyaloo Ailonga, Acting Secretariat Manager: Financial Literacy Initiative, Ndangi Katoma, MD: Old Mutual Retail Mass Market, Omagano Kankondi, Head of Solutions Mapping at the United Nations Development Programme, Patty Olivier, MD: Old Mutual Corporate Segment, Ndapewa Teressius, Coordinator of the Connect Africa App, Timteus Nangombe, Co-founder of the Connect Africa App and Tom Shilongo, Founder and CEO: Launch Namibia.