Founded in 2017, eFounders Fellowship will be hosting its second event. This will take place in Hangzhou city, in China. eFounders Fellowship was founded by a Chinese billionaire Jack Ma. Jack Ma is also the founder of Alibaba Group. The initiative’s main goal is to empower 1,000 entrepreneurs from developing countries in the next five years. The main targeted entrepreneurs are those that are running technology-related businesses. These businesses should be in the logistics, e-commerce, tourism sector, and big data.
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) is one of the co-organizers of the initiative. Selected African entrepreneurs will have an opportunity to attend a 2-weeks course on e-commerce in China. According to a statement from Alibaba Business School, Rwandan entrepreneurs are legible to apply for this year’s initiative. Three startups from Rwanda took part in the inaugural program that took place in 2017. The entrepreneurship programs include structured series of workshops. It also includes hackathons, site visits, lectures, and classrooms.
In 2017, 25 entrepreneurs were selected from across Africa. But this year the initiative targets to increase the number to 40 startup entrepreneurs. Among the local startups that took part in 2017 program include Go Limited. Go Limited startup helps farmers to improve their productivity. It does this by giving them the best, personalized and modern practices. Another startup was Mergims startup. Megrims is a local tech startup that links African immigrants to their homelands. This helps them to pay for utilities and many more expenses locally. Another Rwandan startup to grace the occasion was Pikkostores. This is an online shopping and selling platform. It gives clients a shopping experience and retailers direct and simple access to the larger customer base in the region.
The program will provide entrepreneurs with e-commerce first-hand exposure. They will also be able to learn about e-commerce innovation from China and all over the world. The participants will be able to share new ideas globally. This will be through coming up with impactful communities and empowering their fellow peers. According to Alibaba and UNCTAD, entrepreneurs will receive tools to improve their ventures. They are therefore expected to serve as network champions and builders of new ideas to approach commerce in their home markets. The initiative comes after Ma’s visit to Rwanda in 2017 where he promised to develop a $10 million Young African Entrepreneurs Fund. Applications are open until 4th May 2018. One can use the link https://agi.alibaba.com/efounders-fellowship?spm=a2738.11137220.127.116.11e24 to make their applications.