The group chairman of UBA Plc, Mr. Tony Elumelu has taken his Africapitalism philosophy to the University of Ghana, Legon in continuation of his strategic tour of engineering a robust economic and business relationship across Africa.

Addressing the students, youths from the country-side, academics and entrepreneurs during the visit, Elumelu emphasised that entrepreneurship and not aid is key to achieving poverty reduction and empowering Africans to solve “our challenges without dependence on aid from western countries.”

He said a successful entrepreneur does not exist in a vacuum stressing that one must possess certain intrinsic qualities.

“The first is dedication, then vision, focus, ambition, and our ability to do things when we want to do them,” he said.

He said those were some of the things that made him, at 34, the managing director of Standard Trust Bank which later merged with UBA.

“Today, UBA is among the top three banks in the country and rapidly growing in Africa. I saw us grow a bank from five branches to 1000 branches with presence in 19 African countries and in Paris, London and New York. The lesson here is start small, have a purpose, be disciplined, think long term.

“Knowledge has no currency or value. It is priceless and there is no greater gift than the gift of knowledge. Africans must come up with innovative, home-grown solutions for challenges we continue to face. UBA embraces this innovation; UBA was the first bank to encourage customers to come and bank with zero account balance,” he said.

Earlier, Elumelu had held a meeting with the President of Ghana, Mr. Nana Akufo-Addo which deliberated on matters of mutual benefit and issues geared towards the growth and development of finance and entrepreneurship in that West African country.

“I am delighted to be on this historic visit to Ghana which has been a shining light of UBA’s business across Africa. It was a great opportunity to meet with and congratulate the newly elected president of Ghana…Akufo-Addo and to extend our readiness to partner with his administration in the rapid development of Ghana and Africa at large. It was also an honour to meet with young and vibrant students and share my vision of Africapitalism,” said Elumelu.

Africapitalism is the economic philosophy developed by Elumelu.

It is predicated on the belief that Africa’s private sector can and must play a leading role in the continent’s development.

The principles of Africapitalism, entrepreneurship, long-term Investments, investment in strategic sectors, development dividend, value-added growth, regional connectivity, multi-generational development and shared purpose that will foster collaboration between businesses, investors, governments, academia, civil society, philanthropists, and development institutions to create conditions that will empower the African private sector to thrive