Ope Jobberman

Jobberman was started from a dorm room at the Obafemi Awolowo University. Fast forward to 2016, and Africa’s largest jobs website is one of the most recognisable startup success stories on the continent. Its founding trio are constantly feted with congratulatory confetti — recently, Mark Zuckerberg name-checked them.

Now, one of them, Opeyemi Awoyemi and Passion Incubator’s Olufunbi Falayi are starting a fund to get behind the ideas of Nigerian university undergrads and recent graduates who are possibly building the next Jobberman. Along with Nigerian university alumni and other high net-worth individuals, Fast Forward plans to invest up to N200 million (just over $600,000), with a ticket size of between N250,000 and N2,000,000, for up to 25 percent equity in each venture.

Opeyemi describes the thinking behind Fast Forward.

“Graduate unemployment in Nigeria is at an alarming high which begs the question — what is being taught in our schools? If education is supposed to be the way to be empowered, what changed? A lot has changed and it’s clear today that the way to create jobs is by encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship.”

While seemingly unconnected, the move seems to have precedent. Jobberman recently made a strategic investment in Stutern, which is essentially a bet on the prospects of two green twin entrepreneurs, fresh off the school boat themselves.

Opeyemi ends the Medium post announcing the fund on a decidedly Trumpsian note (so sorry, Ope).

“Let’s make our schools the bedrocks of innovation again”.

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