The Shell Petroleum Development Company Joint Venture said it had trained another 60 youths in entrepreneurship, business planning, management and pitching as part of its employment generation initiatives in Ogoniland.
It said in a statement on Sunday that 50 of the trainees, who were successful in the final assessment, received start-up funds for their business ideas under the LiveWIRE Nigeria programme.
The SPDC JV said the youth were from Gokana, Tai, Eleme and Khana local government areas of Ogoniland in Rivers State.
It said at the graduation ceremony held in Port Harcourt, six beneficiaries of a similar programme in 2015 received ‘The Young Business Leaders Award’ for being outstanding in their business.
The General Manager, External Relations, SPDC, Igo Weli, said, “We are pleased that the LiveWIRE programme has continued to make positive impact not only on the lives of the latest beneficiaries, but also on youths in the Niger Delta.
“Like in the previous sets, these beneficiaries went through the entrepreneurship training, wrote business plans, pitched their business ideas, and in the end, the 50 best-performing candidates were selected.
“With the start-up grants we’re handing out, the stage is set for a new army of business owners and potential employers of labour to emerge in Ogoniland.”
According to the statement, more than 70 per cent of the 105 youths who benefited from a similar programme in 2015 are already successful business owners and employers of labour.
The Director, Enterprise and Promotion, Rivers State Ministry of Youth Development, Christian Bogba, was quoted as saying, “I hope other companies will borrow a leaf from what the SPDC Joint Venture has done today by contributing to the improvement of the economic wellbeing of the people and promoting peace.”