Oak Nation Entrepreneurial (ONE) Foundation is one of the leading entrepreneurial foundations equipping youths especially higher institution students with business skills to transverse the murky waters of converting research dissertations and theses to start-ups in the unstable business environment.

As the ONE Foundation celebrates its 6 years of operation, the Executive Director, Prince David Adeoye shared impactful contributions, future target of the foundation with Yusuf Olabamiji of FreshPage Media tagged spotlight of UNIPRENEURS

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Of 100 Entrepreneurial Education programs, events and online courses, Unipreneurs – the Entrepreneurial thinking campus – centric program, is foremost event that has made me travel over 4,000 kms cumulative by road.
Of 3500+ enterprising people and lasting businesses impacted, my growing concern revolves around converting at least 1000 thesis/desertification of the schooling youths to startups with at least a unicorn through Unipreneurs.

Being an enabler of entrepreneurial ecosystem, we have started contributing to Policy, hosting multi-sectorial discuss to ensure youths are passionate (enterprising) and to build lasting businesses from insight gained in education institutions.

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Matter Arising from Campuses of Higher Education in Nigeria

The schooled and schooling youths are heavily involved in income generating economic activities (Nano businesses) and this gesture is said to be responsible for about 70% of new businesses created in Nigeria in 2023.

The Nano businesses – within early stage (1-12 months- pre-seed and seed categories) that are yet operated by self, family and friend funds (about 90%)- are in the majority (84.98%).

The concern here is the weak enabling environment from the higher education institutions. Just as no student graduates without desertification, the schools attach an academic for this outcome. So also, there is need for mentors to be attached to students to ensure passion and transformation of passion to profit.

Creating Enabling Environment for Economic growth of Youths

In addition to mentorship, the second layer of enabling environment for youths economic growth involves partnership with stakeholders in the community of practice: Federal and states investment agencies; Bank of Industry; should be partnered with by the schools to provide seed funds.

Clearly, there is disconnection between fund supply and demand. Synergy of the higher education institutions and funders will ensure appropriate supply and demand.

The third layer of partnership should involve Business Development Service (BDS) providers with track record of work with higher education institutions. Because the age bracket of 25-32 years, post graduate students, is in the majority (49.15%) among the drivers of micro and small businesses that seek structured entrepreneurial education. Consequently, mentorship should be coupled with structured entrepreneurial education program and funding readiness fellowship as BDS package.

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Mindset shift should be foremost recipe of BDS package. At Oak Nation Entrepreneurial Foundation, UNIPRENEURS is the BDS package that ensures undergraduates are passionate about a productive course, with sustainable consistency till purpose is birth and being fulfilled profitably.

With UNIPRENEURS, in partnership with Rotaract Club D9125 and D9126 (effective from July 1, 2024), we will ensure higher education citadels of learning in Oyo, Ondo, Ekiti, Osun, Kwara, Kogi and Niger States are filled with intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs.

Yours in the business of building lasting businesses

Prince David Adeoye
ED, ONE Foundation


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