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City sows seeds of entrepreneurship

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The challenge, in partnership with Seed Academy, is designed to kick start the businesses of 100 young entrepreneurs with viable business ideas.

The City of Cape Town’s Social Development and Early Childhood Development Directorate is turning its attention to would be entrepreneurs in its latest youth development initiative.

The #YouthStartCT Entrepreneurial Challenge 2016 is an accelerator programme for start-up entrepreneurs who have viable business ideas that will also create jobs. The City, in partnership with Seed Academy, a training, incubation and funding ecosystem for entrepreneurs that focuses on dramatically growing and scaling high growth potential businesses, will offer participants business skills development, mentoring and cash incentives to the top performers as part of a broader strategy to address issues of unemployment, inequality and poverty alleviation. Altech Radio Holdings, a leader in the industry of innovation which provides a variety of converged telecommunications services ranging from digital radio communication networks to licensed radio trunking network services, has come on board as a key sponsor and integral partner in the challenge.

‘We talk often about job creation, but an integral part of that process is empowering potential employers who can contribute to our job creation efforts. It’s one thing to create a job opportunity for an individual, but it’s far more beneficial to equip an individual who has a hunger and desire to own their own business with the skills to make that dream a reality and put them in a position to create job opportunities for dozens if not hundreds of others,’ said Mayoral Committee Member for Social Development and Early Childhood Development, Councillor Suzette Little.

The #YouthStartCT challenge is open to residents of Cape Town aged 18 to 35. After the closing date for applications, Seed Academy which is running the challenge on behalf of the City, will assess the submissions and select the top 100 entries. This group will participate in a 10-week long mentoring and training course, after which the group will be whittled down to the top 50, top 10 and then the top three. The overall winner at the end of the competition will receive prizes and support in the implementation of their business idea. The City will also devise a strategy to help further the ideas and/or plans of each of the top 100 participants.

‘We’re always talking about making progress possible together. This is an example of how government is helping individuals help themselves. We need to move away from the perception that government alone is meant to solve our socio-economic challenges. We need people who’ll put their hands up and work with us to make the change. So this really is a call to action to those young people who believe they have an idea that will take off and make a meaningful contribution to our job creation and poverty alleviation efforts. I am very excited about this challenge and have no doubt that we’ll be blown away by the ideas to be presented,’ added Councillor Little.

‘Altech Radio Holdings, as part of the larger Altron Group, has a rich history of supporting skills development and job creation programmes in the communities in which it operates and welcomes the opportunity to be part of this great initiative by the City of Cape Town to drive entrepreneurship and economic development,’ said Brett Nash, Managing Director of Altech Radio Holdings

“At Seed Academy, we believe that the development of entrepreneurs and nurturing of startups through training and incubation are needed to impart the right skills and to develop the right mindsets to consider entrepreneurship as viable career options. Our programmes have been designed with sustainability in mind – we ensure our entrepreneurs are  equipped, personally and professionally, to know what it takes to build, run and scale a business. We look forward to taking this journey with them” Lara Rosmarin Executive Director Seed Academy.
For more information on the #YouthStartCT challenge and to apply visit: http://www.capetown.gov.za/en/YouthStartCT/Pages/default.aspx

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