Budding entrepreneurs in Kenya stand the chance of winning $12,000 in a  new entrepreneur and small business award organised by serial entrepreneur Njeri Rionge.

The ‘Innovation & Business Award’ will be unveiled in the inaugural ‘Scaling Your Business Upwards Summit ‘ which will be held in Nairobi on the 18th and 19th of September.

The summit will offer upcoming entrepreneurs the opportunity to network with their peers and industry leaders and learn how to expand and grow their companies.

The summit will be graced by business leaders who will share their experiences with small and medium sized businesses. It will focus on questions that entrepreneurs and growing businesses would like answered in their quest to scale their businesses and take them to the next level.

The ‘Innovation & Business Award’ award seeks to celebrate innovation and entrepreneurship by identifying the most innovative new businesses coming out of Kenya and is being sponsored in its first year by venture capital fund, UpCountry Capital.

Njeri Rionge, who is one of East Africa’s leading entrepreneurs, said the summit and award will inspire upcoming entrepreneurs and support their business ventures.

“Among our many Kenyan entrepreneurs, we would like to find and celebrate the game changers who are out there – the innovators who disrupt markets or who’ve found a better way of delivering a service, or designing a product. I’m excited to see all the nominations as they come in, and hear more about what our next generation of small businesses and the entrepreneurs who create them are working on. I hope this award will inspire them and maybe help them along the way.” said Rionge, executive director, Ignite Consulting and Insite Ltd, and Chair of the Summit.

Rionge has co-founded multi-million dollar companies. She is famous for having co-founded Wananchi Online ( now Wananchi Holdings Group), a leading Internet service provider which has gone on to become East Africa’s leading cable, broadband and IP (Internet-based) phone company.

Rionge is among the key speakers who will offer upcoming entrepreneurs advice during the summit, on among other issues, start-up financial management and fundraising, business development and IT as an enabler, operating environment and governance and organizational development strategies.

Interested participants can apply for the award via the Scaling Your Business Upwards Summit website. The deadline for nominations is 1st November 2012. Winners will be announced in January 2013.

For enquiries about the Innovation and Business Award, contact Louis Gikonyo via email.

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