Google on Wednesday announced that 5,000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and entrepreneurs in Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa would be receiving free training through the newly launched Hustle Academy.
Teju Abisoye, Executive Secretary, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund, said in a statement that the training would help their businesses thrive.
Abisoye said that Google Hustle Academy is a boot camp-style training designed to help entrepreneurs and small businesses owners position their businesses for investment opportunities and build viable business models for the future.
He said that the Hustle Academy is a practical educational program with interactive activities and instruction by subject matter experts.
“The Google Hustle Academy Program is a laudable initiative that will help improve business prospects and also create the impact desired at the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund.
‘’ I recommend this programme to business owners and SMEs, to improve results and growth in Lagos business ecosystem.
‘’Business owners will undergo five days of hands-on training and receive 3000 hours of training on fundamental aspects of the business to help them navigate the challenges faced by SMEs in Africa,’’ he said.
According to him, the training curriculum includes strategic growth sessions on business growth strategy and building digital marketing roadmaps.
Others include discovering and evaluating funding routes and how to pitch for success among other topics.
Mojolaoluwa Aderemi-Makinde, Head of Brand and Reputation, Sub-Saharan Africa said that SMEs are the engine that drives growth for any economy.
She said that in Africa, SMEs account for around 80 per cent of jobs and are a significant source of economic growth.
Aderemi-Makinde said that in order to grow the economy and increase employment, it is crucial that small businesses have access to the right tools, training and funding to scale up.
According to her, the Hustle Academy’s mission is to assist entrepreneurs navigate the business challenges they face by providing them with the appropriate tools and knowledge.
She said that the program was open to businesses that have been in operation for more than a year, have developed a business strategy and defined their product or service offering, and are aiming to grow.
Aderemi-Makinde said that they must also have made a profit in the previous 12 months or within 1-3 months of breaking even.
She said that since 2017, Google has been providing digital skills training in Africa and while there has been a measurable success in growing these skills.
She said that SMBs need more hands-on support; the core intent of the Hustle Academy is to support SMBs with the right skills, resources and access to thrive and grow.
According to her, our hope is that through the Hustle Academy training this year, we will be able to assist 5,000 SMEs and entrepreneurs across Africa.
Aderemi-Makinde said it would take their business to the next level and find ways to scale our efforts to help even more businesses going forward
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that interested and qualified businesses could apply to join the program at g.co/hustleacademy