Friday, 3 May 2013
(NEWS): Covenant University Battles For $1m Hult Prize
Team Fudio of Covenant University stands the chance to win $1 million (about N158m) to start up their social enterprise as at this year’s Hult Prize competition if they propose the very best idea to change the world. This year’s competition brought together over 10,000 applicants from 150 different countries with solutions to the global food crisis.
Funded by Swedish Billionaire, Bertil Hult and supported by the Hult International Business School, the Hult Prize, in partnership with former U.S. President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative, the Hult Prize aims to identify and launch the most compelling social businesses that tackle the crippling issues faced by the billions at the bottom of the economic pyramid.
The Hult Prize is a start-up accelerator for social good. Dedicated to launching the next wave of social entrepreneurs through identifying, funding, mentoring, advising and launching new social businesses.
The 2013 edition is themed around global food security and will focus on how to get safe, sufficient, affordable and easily accessible food to the 200 million people who live in urban slums – a challenge personally selected by President Clinton.
“The Hult Prize is thrilled that Team Babajide of Covenant University has joined the initiative,” said Dr. Stephen Hodges, President of the Hult International Business School. “This year’s competition has received a record number of entries, bringing together some of the most talented students to help solve global food security which can benefit nearly a billion people.”
Although the Fudio team did not win at the regional finals held in March, and won by McGill University, Boston, close sources say that they have improved on their programme and are now the only Nigerian team representing the country in the online competition.
The leader of the team, Babajide Owoyele while speaking on their initiative said: “Whether or not we get this opportunity to change our country is dependent on the people’s votes, that is why we want to get more and more people to buy into our vision.
“It is our solution to food insecurity in urban slums and it partners with farmers, offering optimized storage systems using the clay-in-clay method with no electricity required in exchange for farm produce at discount rates. FUDIO incorporates local micro-restaurants called “mama-put,” re-branding them with lean production systems and micro-franchising them to produce Safe, Nutritious, Available, Ready & Cheap (SNARC) food.”
Owoyele said further that “Employing customer loyalty scheme; offering points for patronage, which the customers eventually exchange for clay-in-clay pot refrigerators; we build a strong network of customers on the slum.”
Public voting for the online competition ends on May 12, and the winner will be announced on May 20. Winners will get an opportunity to spend the summer in the Hult Accelerator – a world class center for innovation located in Boston.
Regional and online winners will on May 21 move into virtual accelerator.
Following the conclusion of their time working in the Hult Accelerator, each of the six winning teams then pitch their start-ups at the annual Clinton Global Initiative meeting on September 22, 2013, where President Clinton, along with CGI Meeting attendees select and award the winning team with a $1 million prize.