The Director, Entrepreneurship and Skills Development Centre, University of Lagos, Prof. Sunday Adebisi, said plans are underway to produce about 5,000 student preneurship by 2025.
Adebisi gave the hint during the maiden edition of the centre’s Business Innovation and Talent Expression (BITE) programme at the weekend.
He said the essence of BITE is to further encourage undergraduates with good business ideas to become owners of businesses and employers of labour even before graduation.
“What is happening here today is what we call BITE. Come and BITE. This is where we gather all the business ideas of students of this university and assist them berth these ideas.
“And for some of them that have ideas and others who already kick started something on their own before now, we want to help them structure these ideas and their businesses, so that they can take it to the next level,” he said.
He said 329 businesses initially registeredfor the programme, it was later scaled down to 224, then 120, to 61.
“The entire 61 came together and from there the best 10 were selected. Of these 10, we have gotten the final three. For instance, one of the finalists’ business idea is on ways to support education technology.
To massively support students that intend to study abroad, how they can excel in their foreign examination, such as Toefil,” he stated.
Adebisi, who currently occupies the Dr. Mike Adenuga Junior Chair of Entrepreneurial Studies, said another business idea that was celebrated was that of bag making for ladies, men and students, by one of the top three contestants.
He said the other third finalist is into amazing shoes that could compete internationally.
He stated that BITE was a platform to further encourage and expose the talents of the students.
The director said the university would register 200 businesses that applied for the BITE programme, and would also ensure that they are all incorporated.
He added that the institution would assist them to patent their products, as well as provide spaces for them to operate.
Adebisi said the 61 businesses that made it to the second round would also be registered by the university.
“We are going to incorporate and also help in patenting their products, give them mentorship and assist them to access the N259 million soft loan by the Bank of Industry (BoI).
The Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe said the programme was designed to further intensify moves by the institution to ensure that levery student graduated with at least one skill.
“I must say I am very impressed with what I saw here today. From the amazing shoes, bag designs, clothes and others. With the way the students have been able to showcase their skills and talents, there is a great future for Nigeria,” he stated.
The vice-chancellor commended Mrs. Fajemirokun of the Dele Fajemirokun Foundation for sponsoring the programme and called on alumni and friends of the university to assist in sustaining the programme to impact on the country’s economy.
He added that the three finalists went away with N2 million, N1.5 million and N750,000 for the first, second and third respectively.