An entrepreneur’s dream Christmas | Allan Gray Orbis Foundation
An entrepreneur’s dream Christmas

An entrepreneur’s dream Christmas

With just 52 days to go before Christmas I thought it would be good to bring you some early festive cheer through some great entrepreneurship award opportunities.

Even if 2015 had some Grinch-inducing occurrences for you, now, at least, you can end it the right way with something positive to look forward to in the New Year for your business. Consider today’s post the Foundation’s (early) Christmas present to you. That they mirror our values so closely makes it easy to see why the following “gifts” are on our list of festive favourites.

  1. Township Entrepreneur Awards


townshipThe Gauteng Department of Economic Development will be using the inaugural Township Entrepreneur Awards to draw public attention to township businesses and their successes. The aim is to unlock business opportunities in the townships and inspire investment confidence so that the future form and substance of the township economy and its sustainability are amplified. The awards will also act as a launchpad for a 13-part reality TV show open to township entrepreneurs across the Gauteng province. The closing date for entries has been extended to 9 November 2015.


  1. Total Startupper of the Year

Let’s face it – everybody had to start somewhere. Google, Facebook, Twitter, Airbnb and other leading names in the 2.0 economy all started as the brainchild of inspired young people. There’s no shortage of startuppers in Africa — iCow, CardioPad, Obami and M-Iouma are some of the startups that are changing the way the continent lives, moves and works. So if you’re a young African (under 35) and if you’re currently preparing a business plan or are in the early stages of creating your own business then you’re eligible to enter.

Total are interested in all projects, regardless of the type of business or activity, as long as they share the characteristics common to creative start-ups:

  • Innovation
  • Competitiveness
  • Growth boosting
  • Job creation

The contestant must be a citizen of any one of the 34 African countries where its application is submitted in order to create or develop its project there. Only one application per contestant is admitted. Closing date 31 January 2016.


  1. Unilever Sustainable Living Young Entrepreneurs Awards


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If you read our recent blog on Global Citizenry, you’ll see the appeal of these awards. Since inception in 2013, The Unilever Sustainable Living Young Entrepreneurs Awards, in partnership with the Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership, have sought innovative yet practical solutions, created by young people, to help make sustainable living commonplace. The closing date for the awards is 18 November 2015. Six finalists will each receive cash prizes of €10,000, along with support and mentorship (worth €10,000). One winner will receive a €50,000 cash prize and will be awarded the HRH The Prince of Wales Young Sustainability Entrepreneur Prize at an event in London in Spring 2016 and €25,000 worth of support and mentoring.

  1. FNB Business Innovation Awards

In partnership with Endeavour, FNB have developed a platform where innovative businesses in South Africa are recognised. Former First Rand CEO, and now Endeavor Board Member, Paul Harris believes that the awards “are a real opportunity for high-impact entrepreneurs to unleash their potential. Endeavor’s extensive experience in working with high-impact businesses is perfectly complemented by FNB’s commitment to innovation.”  The selection criteria for these awards are based on Endeavor’s entrepreneur selection model (both for the business and business owner), which caters for scale-ups. Facilitated by Endeavor South Africa, the selection criteria of the awards focus on businesses that are able to meet the following standards:

  • Development impact
  • Business innovation
  • Fit with FNB and Endeavor

The awards come with incredible international networking opportunities. Entries are now open and close on 31 January 2016.

Good luck!


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