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Ashish J Thakkar, Mara Foundation Founder

APO Group, a media relations consultancy for Africa and the Middle East and Mara Foundation, founded by Ashish J Thakkar, today, 27 November 2017, announced they signed an exclusive partnership agreement with special focus on Mara Mentor’s 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, Mara Foundation Executive Director.

“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, APO Group Chief Executive Officer. 

“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,” adds Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard.  

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