Monday, 27 November 2017

APO Group and Mara Foundation create strategic partnership for Mara Mentor programme

APO Group and Mara Foundation, Mara Group’s philanthropic arm will collaborate to elevate opportunities for African entrepreneurs to find mentors

LAUSANNE, Switzerland, November 27, 2017/ -- APO Group (www.APO-opa.com), the leading media relations consultancy for Africa and the Middle East and Mara Foundation (www.Mara-Foundation.org), founded by Ashish J Thakkar (www.AshishJThakkar.com), today announced they signed an exclusive partnership agreement with special focus on Mara Mentor’s (https://Mentor.Mara.com) flagship programme, Mara One-on-One. Mara One-on-One objective is to support the start-ups and growth of young businesses by connecting successful businessmen and businesswomen with passionate entrepreneurs for six months personalised mentorship.

As part of the new collaboration, APO Group will provide an ideal loudspeaker effect, through media relations, to report on the success of the Mara Foundation’s Mara Mentor programme. With operations in 54 of Africa's markets, APO Group will be the conduit for the mentors and mentored to keep track of their activities through the world.

“We are very excited about the impact the partnership with APO Group will cultivate through the Mara One on One mentoring initiative,” said Rona Kotecha, Executive Director, Mara Foundation. “Mara Foundation is committed to supporting entrepreneurs globally with a particular focus on Africa, young entrepreneurs and women entrepreneurs. Mara Mentor enables entrepreneurs to become agents of job creation and contribute to local economies. Our mission is to support entrepreneurs start up and scale sustainable businesses across industries and geographies”.

Mara One-on-One aims to support the start-ups and growth of young businesses by connecting successful businessmen and businesswomen with passionate entrepreneurs for six months personalized mentorship. This initiative is designed to help young enterprises survive the cut-throat world of business by creating alliances with strong players who have already succeeded in running successful companies. Through this programme, young entrepreneurs will be able to position their businesses for sustainable growth through one-on-one sessions with a Mentor drawn from the top of the business world.

“This is a meaningful collaboration between Mara Foundation and APO Group. We share the same vision of empowering African young entrepreneurs and startupers with leading solutions to help them achieve their dreams and grow,” said Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard, CEO of APO Group. “Africa’s thriving economies have an undeniable link to the success of African entrepreneurship. Now is the time to provide them with the guidance and inspiration a mentor can willingly share. From coast to coast and North to Southern Africa, Mara Mentor programme will provide an opportunity for young entrepreneurs to meet with Africa's mentors over a digital platform as well as in personal to have personalized mentorship at no cost. This frequency will increase as host countries become supportive of the programme”.

Mara Mentor provides a seamless service in a modern and dynamic platform, through which entrepreneurs gain: encouragement, support, guidance and most significantly - vital feedback required for the progression of business ideas and plans. A vision aligned with developing economies and affirmations to increase SME productivity sectors in respective countries, the Mentor programme is an open mic to create promising discussions of increasing GDP, lowering unemployment rates, growth of socio economic classes and reduction in gender inequality. It encourages idea and knowledge sharing amongst the most promising young entrepreneurs and women entrepreneurs, inspiring a collaborative approach to business start-up and growth.

“It gives us great pride to be part of such an initiative, encouraging young leaders of tomorrow and contributing to Africa's SME's successful future. Sharing, distributing positive information about the continent is also part our success and we strongly encourage everyone to do it as well. Africa's young leaders are full of ideas and good intentions, it is important to let them have a voice,” added Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard.

This is a joint press release issued by APO Group and Mara Foundation.

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Media contact:
Hetal Shah | HetalS@Mara.com   
Aïssatou Diallo | bdm@APO-opa.org | +41 22 534 96 97

About Mara Foundation
Mara Foundation (www.Mara-Foundation.org) is founded by Ashish J Thakkar. Mara Foundation is part of Mara Group (https://Mara.com), a pan-African multi-sector business with extensive operating experience in both African and international markets. Established in 2009, Mara Foundation focuses on fostering entrepreneurialism in Africa through a myriad of programmes designed to address the complete life-cycle of an entrepreneur’s business idea. The Foundation works to create sustainable economic and business development opportunities for young entrepreneurs via Mara Women, Mara Mentor, Mara Launchpad and the Mara Ad-Venture Capital Fund. Mara Mentor’s online platform and mobile app have been developed by Mara Online – Mara’s online and mobile technology business. The Foundation is active in a number of countries including Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya and Nigeria. For more information, visit www.Mara-Foundation.org

About Mara Mentor
The Foundations free online mentoring platform, Mara Mentor (https://Mentor.Mara.com) connects ambitious entrepreneurs and business leaders globally, the web based platform is also available on mobile applications on iOS and Android. Mara Mentor enables ambitious and aspiring entrepreneurs to connect with peers and business leaders globally. Enabling, empowering and inspiring entrepreneurs through the provision and access of a breadth of resources consisting of: discussion and debate forums, training and tools, industry news & updates and furthermore an open access feature for entrepreneurs to connect to renowned world class mentors. Mara Mentor has been created to empower not just Africa’s youth and women in their business endeavours, but youth and women globally: in recognition that they are the driving force behind global development and growth through innovation. For more information, visit https://Mentor.Mara.com

About APO Group
Founded in 2007, APO Group (www.APO-opa.org) is a leading media relations' consulting firm in Africa and Middle East.  We assist private and public organizations in sharpening their reputation and increasing their brand equity in target countries. As trusted partner, our role is to leverage the power of media and build bespoke strategies that enable organizations to produce a real and measurable impact in Africa and the Middle East and outside the regional frontiers. The trust and recognition that have been granted to APO Group by global & multinational companies, governments, as well as NGOs impels the company to continuously enhance its value proposition within Africa & Middle East to better cater its clients ‘needs. Amongst our prestigious clients: Facebook, Dangote Group, GE, Uber, Microsoft, Nokia, Mara Group, PwC, DHL, Marriott Group, Sage, Ecobank, Iflix, Jumia, Samsung, Total, Merck, Société Générale, L'Oréal, Oracle, Philips, Barclays, MoneyGram, Ernst & Young, Orange ... Since November 2017, APO Group is the Official Partner of Rugby Africa.
Headquarter: Lausanne, Switzerland | Offices in Senegal, Dubai and Hong Kong

Multimedia content

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    Image: Ashish J Thakkar, Founder of Mara Foundation (1)
    Image: Ashish J Thakkar, Founder of Mara Foundation (2)
    Image: Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard, CEO of APO Group
    Link: Mara Foundation
    Link: Mara Group
    Link: Ashish J Thakkar
    Link: APO Group

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