PLATFORMS

 Innovation SL “platforms” was typically set up to provide  technological ecosystems that connect different participants, enabling them to interact, transact, and create value. These platforms often facilitate the exchange of goods, services, information, or experiences. Entrepreneurial platforms have become increasingly important in modern business models due to their potential to disrupt traditional industries and create innovative solutions. Here are some key platforms created by Innovation SL

STARTUP LEONE
SALONE CROWDFUNDER

Salone Crowdfunder : Enabling Access to Finance for Innovators and Enterpreneurs in Sierra Leone.

Salone Crowdfunder is a donation based crowdfunding platform for Enterpreneurs and Innovators with Ideas and businesses based in Sierra Leone

Startup Leone : Startup Leone is an online Magazine covering start-ups news like never before and thus speeding up the Start-up Ecosystem and connecting the dots between Entrepreneurs, Investors, Mentors, Events, Start-up Incubators and Accelerators and all major players in the Start-up Ecosystem.

ECOSYSTEM

We believe that  for Entrepreneurship and Innovation to play the crucial role in creating jobs and growing the Sierra Leonean economy, we need to develop value creating and high growth entrepreneurs. For this to happen, the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem must be in place and enabled.

This is why our approach has been based on developing components of the ecosystem;   and enabling other parts of the ecosystem that is suited to nurturing value creating and high growth potential startups and scale ups.

Below are site dedicated to these Ecosystems.

The Freetown Pitch Night : Pitch Night is a night, which provides budding entrepreneurs in Sierra Leone the opportunity to pitch their ideas or post revenue business. At pitch night entrepreneurs provide a holistic view of their business to a vibrant Sierra Leonean entrepreneur community allowing them to market their business, solicit feedback, advice and potential partnerships.

Pitch Night Purpose

    • Increase desirability and confidence in pursuing entrepreneurship.
    • Provide pitch practice to entrepreneur.
    • Role-model pitching and entrepreneurship to others.
    • Provides stability to entrepreneurship activities.
    • Provides linkages to markets, investors, partners, customers, suppliers, business support services, and capacity developers.

Freetown Innovation Week, brought to you by Innovation SL, promises to be a great opportunity for networking, learning, and exploring new ideas. It’s always inspiring to see people come together to share their knowledge and passion for innovation and creativity.

Attendees will benefit from the insights and expertise of the brightest minds in the city, and the event will spark new collaborations and partnerships that will help shape the future of the nation. We’re thrilled to announce our upcoming event that promises to redefine the limits of what’s possible in Freetown.

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Global Enterpreneurship Week  : Sierra Leone joins the world in celebrating Global Entrepreneurship Week which is a massive campaign marked to celebrate and empower entrepreneurs around the world. The event is geared towards empowering individuals who face structural barriers and may have considered the idea of launching their own startup. Each November, 10 million people take part in tens of thousands of activities, competitions and events that inspire them to act and provide them with the knowledge, experience and connections they need to succeed.

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  • Dare2Aspire :  Dare 2 Aspire was the flagship event of the GEW celebration. It was held on the 20th November 2019, at the Hotel Cabenda, Freetown. It was dedicated to women; women who are actively involved in entrepreneurship or dare to aspire into entrepreneurial endeavors.

    The event was officially opened by Ambassador Tom Vens, the European Union Ambassador to Sierra Leone. He stepped for the Mayor of Freetown was could make the opening, but came later. (See rest of this report).

    In Sierra Leone, women represent a large untapped market as emerging business leaders. 52.8% of our youth population are women.  Approximately 84% of rural women and 63% of urban women operate micro-enterprises such as small-scale farming, table-top trading, artisanal mining, and small-scale fishing.

    Women’s participation in entrepreneurship is crucial as it can enhance the expansion of economic goods whilst leading to less inequality, simultaneously. Investment in entrepreneurship targeting female as well as male youth is critical to ensure Sierra Leone can harness its demographic dividend.

Projects

  • Projects based on innovation and entrepreneurship focus on creating new and valuable solutions to address existing problems or fulfill unmet needs in the market. These projects typically involve a blend of creativity, strategic thinking, and business acumen to develop novel products, services, or processes. Here’s a brief description of such projects:
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  • Innovation and Entrepreneurship Projects:
  • Innovation and entrepreneurship projects involve the identification of opportunities for innovation within a specific industry or market. Entrepreneurs and innovators collaborate to develop groundbreaking ideas, technologies, or business models that can disrupt traditional norms and create competitive advantages. These projects often follow a structured approach, encompassing research, ideation, prototyping, testing, and commercialization. Listed below are few projects under the Innovation SL
  • SLEDP : 
  • • Entrepreneurship has long been considered a primary driver of economic growth in society. With a grant from the World Bank, the Government of Sierra Leone launched in 2022, The Sierra Leone Economic Diversification Project. The Project Development Objective (PDO) is to increase investment and growth of small and medium enterprises in non-mining productive sectors. The project will do so by strengthening the business enabling environment, facilitating strategic public investments to improve competitiveness and investments, supporting SMEs and entrepreneurs, and building the capacity of public institutions and private sector operators.
  • • In line with its PDO, the Project recognized that business incubation and acceleration programs are critical services needed in supporting the growth process of start-ups and SMEs and studies show that the survival rate for incubated companies is higher than that of other companies. Incubation and acceleration of business have proven to maximise the innovation potential of SMEs and help them build the needed connections and collaborations to thrive.
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  • • In 2022, Innovation SL was one of the two service providers selected to incubate 20 start-ups and accelerate 10 SMEs from the Light manufacturing and circular economy sectors.
  • • In 2023 we were one of three selected again to provide business growth services to 20 SMEs from the Agriculture and Light Manufacturing sectors.
  • • Research has also consistently shown that over 50 % of new ventures fail within the first five years (Shane 2008). Given that new venture creation is both valuable to society, but difficult to achieve, it is not surprising that the Government of Sierra Leone and The World Bank decided to put a significant amount of money into entrepreneurship development as part of an economic diversification project. USD 25 mil of the total grant of USD 40 million is allocated to SMEs and Entrepreneurship. Specifically, USD 9 mill of the USD 25 mill is for : Supporting Startups, SMEs and the Entrepreneurship Ecosystem(Subcomponent 2:2)
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  • SOS: Innovation SL/ GEN SL and SOS CHILDREN’S VILLAGE formed a partnership at the end of 2021 to design, implement, provide pitch training and technical support for 25 entrepreneurs under SOS Youth Innovation and entrepreneurship Challenge. The process started with Innovation SL through its network of judges and experts judging 170 applicants over a period of 2 months to select the final 25.SOS Children’s Villages has launched its Covid-19 response intervention which support multiple beneficiaries to build the resilience on the impact of the pandemic on their daily living. As youth care programme is a major programme area for SOS Children’s Villages, SOS Children’s Villages is hosting a Youth Innovation and entrepreneurship Challenge with the aim for supporting 25 winners with financial support to promote their entrepreneurship ideas.
  • TURTLE : 2 friends, Geraldine and Estelle, taking the opportunity of riding the Budapest-Bamako Rally 2022 to raise awareness and funds for Sierra Leonean entrepreneurs.

    Check out our fundraising page: https://gofund.me/1c5f3d6f

    Why would you call your team ‘Turtle’ for a rally?

    Because turtles are brave and persistent…
    Because Turtle Islands are an amazing place! That stayed in Geraldine’s mind since she came to Sierra
    Leone
    Because it’s funny to call yourself Turtle when you enter a rally!
    It’s releasing all pressure because going relaxed is the best way to achieve!
    Because in the fable ‘The Hare and the Tortoise’ from Jean De La Fontaine, the turtle wins at the end!
    Slow and steady wins the race;)
    Because it’s just the first name that popped into our minds when we discussed it – probably a beautiful
    memory already shared together!

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