A United Kingdom-based company, AACLE International, has launched a new business media platform that brings sustainable solutions to diverse challenges of the Nigerian entrepreneur while offering business and vocational people and, especially, students with business ideas all over the world a forum where they can engage and interact with like-minds.
Further, this new online community of entrepreneurs aims to help entrepreneurs by providing financial and other solutions to the business needs of each member.
Founded by Nigerian professionals, aacle.com’s major targets, according to its Director of Social Enterprise, Tosin Adebusuyi, are young school leavers, young adults with viable business ideas and SMEs who would be given business grants ranging from N20, 000 to N1million.
She said, “The aim of AACLE is to help bridge the gaps as a social enterprise that provides a veritable and robust space for interaction among entrepreneurs on one hand; and interaction with solution providers on the other hand. These solution providers are both private and institutional and they bring to the table the seed capital, start-up fund, growth capital and expansion fund to existing and start-up SMEs.”
Ms. Adebusuyi noted that some of the solutions AACLE provides include funding SMEs, finding practical and lasting solutions to take-off challenges, offering legal advice and assistance as they affect businesses, mentoring the needs of business owners and even going as far as ensuring the well-being of entrepreneurs on the platform among others.
Further, she said, “AACLE also hopes to empower the next generation of prospective small and micro entrepreneurs with business intelligence and start-up grants, provide existing and struggling small ventures with growth financing with no or relaxed collateral security, support pensioners and the unemployed with small grants for business venture and provide free on-line counsel to the unemployed in the area of CV writing, job hunting and interview preparation.”
As part of its entry efforts in job and wealth creation, the Central Bank of Nigeria, through its Entrepreneurship Development Centre, has partnered with AACLE which gives the company more in-road into other parts of the country starting with the southwest.
According to Olumide Ajayi, Program Director, CBN-EDC Southwest, “Every person that enrols for the program enjoys world class facilitation and business development services which also includes writing of their business plans and post training field visits, access to funding from the CBN MSME intervention fund and other funding opportunities, linkage with established organisations for internship, as well as 12months of post training mentoring from the centre.”
The benefits are indeed innumerable. Though registration fee for the CBN-EDC is N5, 000, AACLE has offered to pay for 600 Nigerians who register on its platform and who possess a minimum of OND qualification and a BVN among other requirements.