MTN Foundation, JA Eswatini & Destiny Group launch E650 000 Grand Hustler Program

By Sizwe Dlamini 

Talk of putting your money where your mouth is. MTN Eswatini continues to show tremendous support for entrepreneurs in the country. The company through its Foundation has launched the Grand Hustler program, which is a E650 000 investment.

The program is done in partnership with JA Eswatini and the Destiny Group.

The program aims to educate and mentor young entrepreneurs in the art of pitching their valuable business ideas before a panel of potential no-nonsense Angel Investors.

Worth noting is that in October 2023 both the MTN Foundation and Junior Achievement Eswatini invited young entrepreneurs to participate in the Grand Hustler program on their websites.

A massive 400 entrepreneurs applied to the program and only 80 managed to be selected to participate. Filming for the first episode of the Grand Hustler program will take place in May 2024 and will be available for viewing on YouTube and yet-to-be-announced local television channels.

Present at the launch of the Grand Hustler program at the Royal Villas was the Minister of Commerce, Industry & Trade, Manqoba Khumalo, Acting CEO of the Eswatini MTN Foundation Sibusiso Nhleko, the Executive Director of Junior Achievement Eswatini Phetsile Masilela, the Director of Destiny Group Mr. Tom Lin and a selection of the passionate entrepreneurs.

Speaking at the launch, the Minister of Commerce, Industry & Trade, Manqoba Khumalo, said that the entrepreneurs must expect the potential investors to be harsh as issues involving money do not involve kindness.

“The Mission of the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade of Eswatini is to provide an enabling environment and support for the development and growth of business and industry for the attainment of economic development. This aligns closely with the global community’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth.”

“This goal emphasizes the importance of creating an enabling environment for business development, job creation, and sustainable economic growth. Initiatives like the Grand Hustle program align with the mandate of the Ministry and the SDGs. In essence, The Grand Hustle program catalyzes economic transformation, aligning with the Ministry’s mandate to create an environment conducive to business development and growth”.

The Minister added that he would use his rank in government to invite as many investors to the panel as possible and he would also like to thank current potential investors like the Destiny Group.

Also speaking at the launch was the Acting CEO of the MTN Foundation Sibusiso

Nhleko who noted that the Grand Hustler program is meant to foster a culture of Angel Investing in Eswatini.

“Today the MTN Foundation in partnership with Junior Achievement Eswatini and Destiny Group is launching this innovative program for young entrepreneurs. But this is more than just a pitch competition. It’s a chance to revolutionize the landscape of youth entrepreneurship in Eswatini. Our objective is clear, we want to equip young business people with the tools they need to attract Angel Investor Funding and to cultivate a network of Angel Investors eager to support our youth”.

“We also want to sharpen the leadership skills of our future leaders through pitch presentation training and provide ongoing mentorship and coaching to ensure their success. To add to this, the vision of The MTN Foundation is very simple we take a leadership role in investing in communities, to create a better sustainable future for the valued customers”.

Share With Friends