Celebrating Creativity: Highlights from The Assembly’s Creative Class Finale

The curtain closed on another successful edition of The Creative Class, The Assembly’s flagship creative enterprise accelerator, with a spectacular Pitch Finale event on February 24th. Supported by Wema Bank and SARA, this edition saw 57 entrepreneurs from various creative fields undergo four weeks of intensive training, culminating in a thrilling finale.
The Assembly Hub, The Creative Class 4.0 - 2024

The 7 Finalists of the Creative Class 4.0

During the programme, participants were treated to a wealth of knowledge through masterclasses, business modeling workshops, mentoring sessions, and a keynote address by Roberta Annan, Founder and Managing Partner of the Impact Fund For African Creatives (IFFAC). They received invaluable pitch training from over 20 industry experts, both locally and internationally.

In the final weeks of the programme, the top 18 entrepreneurs pitched their businesses to a panel of esteemed judges, including mentors Samuel Ade, Founder of Ilana, and Collins Nwosu, Director at P.R.I Global Ventures Limited, alongside Alaezi Akpuru, Founder of Virgioli Fashion (an alumna of The Creative Class), and Yoanna Okwesa, CEO of The Assembly.

The Assembly Hub, The Creative Class 4.0 - 2024

CEO/FOUNDER THE ASSEMBLY – Yoanna “Pepper” Okwesa

Preparation for the final pitch competitions included dedicated mentoring sessions for the finalists, including Kanyinsola Akinbo, Founder, Kinbo; Mary Elero, Founder, Royal Frocks; Moses Agosu, Founder, MAK; Oghenetejiri Emudainohwo, Founder, Oyoma; Oluwaseye Oladejo, Founder, Scqueeze; Oyinda Ahmed-Salawudeen, Founder, Nya; and Precious Jahdeal Joseph, Founder, Ivory Afrikaan, led by Hannah Middleton, Knowledge Exchange Lead at the Fashion Business School, London College of Fashion, and Wakiuru Njuguna, Managing Partner of HEVA Fund, a Kenyan-based fund that invests in the creative industry in East Africa.

The grand finale and Demo Day held at G.A.S. Foundation in Lagos witnessed the culmination of weeks of hard work and dedication. The finalists, joined by their peers and esteemed guests from the creative ecosystem, showcased their businesses to the judging panel, which included Ayodele Olojede, Divisional Head of Retail and SME Banking at Wema Bank; Kari Tukur, Regional Vice President & Head of Customer Solutions at Mastercard; Malik Afegbua, CEO of Slickcity Media; and Adeju Thompson, Founder and Creative Director of Lagos Space Programme.

The atmosphere was electric as the finalists took to the stage to showcase their innovative products in an intense pitch competition. After a fierce battle, Precious Jahdeal Joseph, Founder, Ivory Afrikaan emerged victorious, leaving the judges and audience spellbound with her creativity and vision. Not to be left behind, Oyinda Ahmed-Salawudeen Founder of Nya and Moses Agosu creative director of MAK put up a valiant fight and were declared 1st and 2nd runners-up, winning cash grant prizes of ₦1,500,000, ₦1,000,000, and ₦500,000, respectively, courtesy of Wema Bank. Inspired by the progress and passion of all the finalists, an additional donation of ₦1,000,000 was given to the runners-up, making it a day to remember for all involved.

THE TOP 3 FINALIST

The event also featured a special address from Mr. Tunde Mabawonku, Executive Director of Finance & Digital Optimization at Wema Bank, reaffirming the bank’s commitment to supporting creative entrepreneurs and fostering innovation in Nigeria. Mr. Fegho Umunubo, Special Assistant to the President on Creative and Digital Economy, Office of the Vice President, shared insights about the federal government’s $617 million investment in the Digital Economy and Creative Enterprises (iDICE) fund, highlighting the importance of initiatives like The Creative Class in driving economic growth and fostering innovation in Nigeria.

As the programme concluded, participants and guests alike were inspired by the display of creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurial spirit. The Creative Class continues to play a crucial role in nurturing emerging talent, empowering entrepreneurs, and contributing to the growth of Nigeria’s creative economy.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Wema Bank, SARA, and all our partners for their unwavering support and to the participants, mentors, judges, and guests for making this edition of The Creative Class a resounding success

Stay tuned for more updates and exciting developments from The Assembly as we continue to champion creativity and entrepreneurship in Nigeria and beyond.

 

The Assembly Hub, The Creative Class 4.0 - 2024

Members of the A-Team and Faculty, Dr Yetty

The Assembly Hub, The Creative Class 4.0 - 2024

Demo Day Panel of Judges

The Assembly Hub, The Creative Class 4.0 - 2024

IvoryAfrikaan Pitching

The Assembly Hub, The Creative Class 4.0 - 2024

Mr. Tunde Mabawonku, Executive Director of Finance & Digital Optimization at Wema Bank Giving a remark

The Assembly Hub, The Creative Class 4.0 - 2024

Cross Section of the Creative Class Demo Day Attendee

The Assembly Hub, The Creative Class 4.0 - 2024

Kinbo Pitching