TEF commits to empowering more African entrepreneurs as Gambia’s Momarr Mass Taal honoured

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

(Issue, Monday - 29 October 2018)
Momarr Mass Taal, Founder and Managing Director of Tropingo Foods; a food processing company focused on dried fruit and nut exports has won an award at the 2018 Africa’s largest entrepreneurship forum in Lagos.

Mr. Taal is a Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) Entrepreneur and his success story is an exceptional one considering how far his company has come from the $5000 Tony Elumelu seed fund in 2015. He was presented with certificate of award together with five other entrepreneurs for their enviable success.

The surprising thing about Momarr’s story is that although he never intended to go into agribusiness from the onset as he wanted to be a diplomat like his father; he has always been a businessman.

He is among few Gambians who have so far benefitted from the support given by the Foundation to entrepreneurs.

Mr. Taal told this reporter shortly after receiving the award that the honour was something that every Gambian should be proud of. “I dedicate this award to all Gambians.”

While urging Gambia government to empower entrepreneurs, Mr. Taal encouraged the youth to always believe in themselves and to go after what they want.

As part of the first cohort of the TEF Programme in 2015, Taal was invited by the organisers in 2016 as an alumni to share his success story and challenges with over 1000 African entrepreneurs.

Meanwhile, three Gambian entrepreneurs for 2018 namely: Banky O.C Njie of Mobankz, Chan Mendy; a fashion entrepreneur and Sarah Bintou Dibbasey, who is into bakery also attended the forum.

Parminder Vir, chief executive officer of Tony Elumelu Foundation also unveiled the TEF Impact Documentary, featuring success stories of the Tony Elumeluu Entrepreneurs.

Tony Elumelu himself reiterated his commitment to championing Africa’s economic development by supporting and training a new generation of entrepreneurs, whose successes can transform the continent, delivering opportunity, job creation and social impact. ‘Africa’s future is in African hands’ he stated.  “Our Foundation and its unique approach of training, mentoring and funding has proven that entrepreneurship is the key to unlocking economic transformation of our continent. I believe so strongly that success can be democratized and if we can match ambition to opportunities, this extraordinary generation can achieve anything.” Tony Elumelu said.   

President Nana Akudo-Addo of Ghana underlined the importance of galvanizing the broad entrepreneurship eco-system, calling on public sector representatives to encourage, support and replicate the work of the Tony Elumelu Foundation in their respective regions.

Speaking on the importance of putting the right policies in place, President Nana Akufo-Addo said: “Nothing is changed or developed on its own. People must get up, speak, have discussions and change the dialogue”. 

Since its inception, the Tony Elumelu Foundation has empowered African entrepreneurs across the continent with a $5,000 non-refundable seed grant, a bespoke training programme designed specifically for the African environment and access to a dedicated group of mentors, significantly contributing to economic growth, job creation and revenue generation. 

Author: Alieu Ceesay from Lagos, Nigeria