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August 29, 2017

[Scholarship Graduates] ABE Initiative (9): Showdown! Business Presentation Battle vs. Youth of Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers, JOCV (Private Sector)

The series introduce scholarship graduates who keep striving towards a better future even after the completion of the program.

This time round, it was about business presentation battle between the ABE Initiative participants and Young JOCV members of JICA Kenya. The ABE Young Entrepreneurs group has already gathered to carry out a Business Planning Study session. Theory and practice should go together. We held a business/activity planning contest where ABE entrepreneurs and young Japanese of JOCVs delivered presentations. After the battle, they praised each other efforts, completely made up after, exchanged and deepened friendship.

* ABE Initiative: Master's Degree and Internship Program of African Business Education Initiative for Youth, launched by Japanese Prime Minister ABE in TICADV in 2013. Participants are from private sector, government officials and educators broadly.

* Regarding "Business Planning Study" held by ABE young entrepreneurs on 4th July, please see;

Two young entrepreneurs from the first batch of the ABE Initiative who came to the ‘battlefield' were Mr. Christopher Mutuma Maitai (Master of Engineering, Miyazaki University) and Mr. Kiprop Eliud (Masters of Engineering Graduate School of Ashikaga Institute of Technology). Both of them have already learnt business planning from Mr. Kenji Aizono, the in charge of Private Sector Development in JICA Kenya office.

Mr. Aizono is a business professional who understands to reveal incomprehensible situations in business here, but with a friendly and attentive storytelling.

On the other hand, 19 JOCVs were gathered to the venue on the day. They also took a lecture on how to use hypothesis verification cycle by Mr. Aizono in advance. This is because of effectiveness not only in business, but also when overseas volunteers face various problems confronted at the actual sites of International Cooperation.

On the opening of the business presentation battle, three JOCV representatives delivered their current activities or business plans in the future. Meanwhile, from the ABE Initiative entrepreneurs, Maitai served his presentation as a representative. He has already started a business and runs his own company as a consultant in energy sector. His presentation was a wonderful one based on his passion for his business. Since all of them have taken Mr. Aizono's Lecture beforehand, various questions were asked productively and the session became an interactive discussion.

After the battle, its atmosphere changed into a peaceful mutual exchange where they all honored each other. The ABE Initiative participants have studied in Japan for two years. On the contrary, the JOCVs will work for two years in developing countries to return to Japan. Both of them are bridges between the two countries, understanding the partner country very well.

Moreover, it turned out that one of JOCVs had already met Maitai when Maitai was studying in Japan. It was an unexpected reunion. Some of ex-JOCVs in Kenya once went back to Japan and came back to Kenya again to do business and so on. ABE Initiative participants and JOCVs can promote a new pattern of partnership. Let's support them so that they can further deepen their friendship and create various collaborations as bridges between the two countries in the future.

PhotoLecturer Mr. Aizono (right) and young entrepreneurs

PhotoJOCVs also attended the lecture on another day


PhotoJOCVs listening to Maitai's presentation

PhotoEnergetically talk about energy business


PhotoEntrepreneur Kiprop in exchange meeting

PhotoWe have met in Japan and meet again here in Kenya!

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