The Ethiospur Business Plan Competition is EDI’s first business plan competition started since 2019. The competition aims to award and support dynamic Ethiopian entrepreneurs who are planning to scale up their existing businesses through providing monetary and non-monetary prizes for the final winners to enhance their entrepreneurial skills to establish profitable, competitive, and sustainable businesses.
Back in 2019, the then EDC-Ethiopia launched the competition as a means to strengthen one of its’s core service; area-access to finance. The competition was open for all existing business regardless of their size and sector. It has started receiving applications on November 1, 2019, and closed on January 20, 2020. Overall, a total of 916 SMEs has applied for the competition via multiple application channels (online, e-mail, assistance by BDS advisors) from five regions (Addis Ababa,Hawassa,Bahir Dar, and Tigray). After the application deadline, two important milestone activities were undertaken; the translation of applications from local languages to English and digitization of all applications for later randomization, and processing the packet for the evaluation by the jury.
After being disrupted by COVID-19 pandemic, EDC resumed the essential process of recruiting over 100 judges from lending institutions (Banks and MFIs) and processing the preparation of the evaluation packets. The evaluation went through a rigorous randomized and de-identified (blind evaluation) process where an application was evaluated at least by 6 judges based on rubrics. The final score dataset was generated after a pretty prolonged evaluation process due to a large number of evaluations and due diligence for the top 20 winners is also completed.
On the 8th of June, 2021, the competition selected the Grand Winners (Top 5), who got the chance to win a share of 840,000 ETB prize pool (of which the first winner will take 300,000ETB, the second- 220,000ETB, the third- 140,000ETB, the fourth- 100,000ETB, and the fifth- 80,000ETB).