FedEx, Citi Foundation and Others Support Youth Entrepreneurship as JA Africa Hosts 11th Company of the Year Competition

February 21, 2022, Accra – JA Africa’s Company of the Year Competition (COY) returns for the 11th edition from February 24 – 26, 2022, bringing together Africa’s most impressive high school entrepreneurs for this contest of business skills, ingenuity, and innovation. COY 2021 will be hosted virtually by JA Mauritius under the theme ‘Innovating with Grit.’ The theme is inspired by students who have demonstrated resilience and adaptability in overcoming setbacks caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses that have survived the pandemic are those that were able to innovate and adapt quickly to new systems and processes that enabled them to continue serving customers despite school closures and other challenges.

The competition, organized annually, is the culminating event of the JA Company Program, which is a 16 week-long business training program that equips young people with entrepreneurial and employability skills needed for career success. Working in teams, the students develop their business skills by starting their own companies while in school. They design, produce, market, and sell their products and services, giving them real-world exposure to the world of business.

“We are grateful to our headline sponsors FedEx and Citi Foundation, who have supported this competition from inception eleven years ago,” said Simi Nwogugu, CEO of JA Africa. “Our partners from PMIEF and Tomorrow Foundation have enhanced the Company Program by infusing it with project management principles and digital skills training to better prepare our beneficiaries for the future of work.”

Nine teams have emerged as finalists from Côte d’Ivoire, Eswatini, Kenya, Mauritius, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe, and will battle to impress JA Africa’s panel of judges comprising global business professionals to earn the coveted title of Company of the Year and the prizes that come with it. The highest among the prizes at stake will be the opportunity to represent the Africa region at the Ralph de la Vega Global Entrepreneurship Competition which will bring together COY winners from the six regions where JA Worldwide operates to compete for awards, $15,000, educational opportunities, and more.

For information on how to watch COY 2021 online, visit www.ja-africa.org/coy2021.

JA Africa:

Junior Achievement (JA) Africa equips young Africans with the employability and entrepreneurial skills and mindset they need to build thriving communities. Through the delivery of financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship training and in collaboration with schools, technical/ vocational centers and other partners, JA Africa works in 13 countries reaching over 250,000 youth each year. Learn more about us at www.ja-africa.org.

FedEx Corp:

FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenue of $90 billion, the company offers integrated business solutions through operating companies competing collectively, operating collaboratively and innovating digitally under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world’s most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its 600,000 team members to remain focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. FedEx is committed to connecting people and possibilities around the world responsibly and resourcefully, with a goal to achieve carbon-neutral operations by 2040. To learn more, please visit about.fedex.com.

Citi Foundation:
The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant communities. The Citi Foundation’s “More than Philanthropy” approach deploys the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and innovation.

Tomorrow Foundation:

Tomorrow Foundation supports African development. They harness technology and bring the most useful techniques and technologies affordably to all Africans to improve their living standards and boost the economies of African countries.