CEO of EIB Network Bola Ray, celebrated the culmination of his entrepreneurship initiative with a grand closing dinner and awards night for the first cohort held yesterday in Accra.

The event marked the conclusion of the “Entrepreneurship with Bola Ray” program, aimed at empowering startups and fostering young entrepreneurial talent in Ghana.

The initiative, launched in December 2023 in collaboration with the European Union in Ghana, sought to empower twenty-five deserving innovative startups led by young entrepreneurs in the country. As part of Bola Ray’s 25 years in the media anniversary celebration, themed ‘Impact At 25,’ the program offered comprehensive support to the selected entrepreneurs, including mentorship, training, and finding.

Throughout the three-month mentorship program, participants were guided and mentored by accomplished Ghanaian entrepreneurs, including KGL boss Alex Dadey, Equity Insurance boss Elton Afari, Reiss & Co. CEO Jeff Sowah, EIB Network General Manager Nana Yaa Sarpong, EU Goodwill Ambassador Victoria Michaels, and Special Ice Group Chairman Ernest Ofori Sarpong.

Others were Imexco Ghana CEO Jean Paul Feghali, Academic Professors Dr. Kwame Nkrumah & Prof. Owusu Nyamekye, and Groupe Sebastien CEO Femi Asante.

The rest were Code Group CEO Fabian Sebastian Thorpe, Cybele Energy CEO Beatrice Mensah Tayui, AU Diplomat Buhle Phiwe Hlatshwayo⁠ , and Saka Homes CEO Kwadwo Saka Addo-Mensah.

The Grand Mentor was EU Ambasador H.E Irchad Razaaly

The highlight of the evening was the the announcement of winners of the pitching competition, where the most promising startups showcased their innovative ideas.

Stephen Selorm Bedzrah, Founder of MyCleanApp, emerged as the winner, receiving GHC10,000 in prize money and an opportunity to attend the Global Entrepreneurship Festival in Nigeria later this year,,

Emmanuel Lucky Ardey, Founder & CEO of Aquaponic, and Wilson Niiquaye Djani, CEO of NIVERDE Foods, were awarded GHC6,000 and GHC4,000 respectively for their outstanding contributions.

Additionally, Harriet Dzidzom Acquah, CEO of Maison Cart, and Comfort Afroba Mireku, CEO of Glitz Events, were honored with signed copies of Bola Ray’s “It Is Possible” book and $100 each from Empire Ghana CEO Dorcas Adisi.

In an inspiring address at the Entrepreneurship with Bola Ray Project’s closing dinner ceremony, Bola Ray expressed deep gratitude and pride for the initiative’s impact on youth empowerment and entrepreneurship. Held in partnership with the EU Ambassador, the event highlighted the transformative power of innovation and risk-taking in shaping a brighter future.

Bola Ray emphasized that entrepreneurship extends beyond profit-making, focusing on creativity, risk-taking, and community impact.

He lauded the dedication and talent of the participating entrepreneurs, recognizing their resilience in overcoming challenges and breaking barriers.

Acknowledging the pivotal role of mentors, Bola Ray credited their guidance and support in shaping the next generation of business leaders. He urged continued support for youth initiatives, emphasizing the importance of providing resources and opportunities for success.

Expressing gratitude to partners, including the EU Ambassador H.E Irchad Razaaly, mentors, and sponsors, Bola Ray highlighted the collaborative effort to foster a culture of entrepreneurship. He called for collective action in inspiring and uplifting one another, envisioning a world where entrepreneurship is not just a business but a way of life.

In conclusion, Bola Ray encouraged individuals to embrace the entrepreneurial spirit, pursue their dreams with determination, and believe in their potential to achieve the impossible. The gala served as a testament to the impact of youth empowerment and innovation in building a brighter, more prosperous future for all.

On his part, the EU Ambassador to Ghana H.E Irchad Razaaly urged participants not to focus on where they are coming from but on where they want to drive their businesses.

He said, “This journey has brought you exposure and the European Union and I sincerely wish you well because if you thrive, it’s not about 25 jobs, it’s about the tens, hundreds, and thousands of jobs that you will create to transform the community and transform the country.”

Sponsors for the Entrepreneurship with Bola Ray initiative include KGL Group, Special Ice, Saka Homes, EIB Network, PubliCiti Stunt Africa, Imexco Ghana, Annabel Brown Consultancy, Hubtel, Reiss & Co., Cricova, Equity Health Insurance, Jambo Spaces, Groupe Sebastiene, Code Group and the Afrikan Diplomat Group.

Source: Ghana/