Lilongwe-based agro-dealer Fannie Gondwe has scooped the 2017 Female Biosciences Business (FemBioBiz) Acceleration Programme Award.
Gondwe will join other top performers, who will have the opportunity to meet investors, business experts and potential mentors and visit Cape Town to participate at the 2017 South African Innovation Summit.
The New Partnership for Africa’s Development’s (Nepad) Southern Africa Network for Biosciences (SANBio), with support from the BioFisa II Programme, will fly Gondwe to South Africa in July 2017 to represent Malawi at the continental competition.
BioFisaII chief technical adviser Marja-Reetta Paaso said at least 15 female entrepreneurs entered the competition by submitting their business proposals for funding to SanBio and its local partner—Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (Luanar).
She said that after scrutinising all the proposals, Gondwe outsmarted the rest.
Paaso said the best performer will receive a grant of R250 000 (about K14 million) to move the business forward and a trip to attend Europe’s leading start-up event Slush 2017 in Finland, where international opportunities await.
Luanar acting vice- chancellor Professor Emmanuel Kaunda described Gondwe’s success as a landmark achievement in the world of female entrepreneurship.
The competition is open to women from SANBio member countries—Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
FemBioBiz Programme was launched in February 2017 by SANBio with support from the BioFisa II Programme. n