The First National Entrepreneurship Awards Will Take Place In Praia

The First National Entrepreneurship Awards Will Take Place In Praia


In a significant milestone for business and innovation, Santiago will be hosting its first-ever National Entrepreneurship Awards on March 23. The event goes beyond merely celebrating the archipelago’s entrepreneurial spirit but also emphasizes the nation’s use of its few natural resources to drive economic growth and development.

A New Chapter in Cape Verde islands Entrepreneurship

The Archipelago’s Entrepreneurial Landscape

Nestled off the west coast of Africa, the Cape Verde Islands, also known as Cabo Verde, boast a strategic location between Europe and the African continent. Despite its limited natural resources, the nation has cultivated a thriving business environment. Not only in the major cities of Santiago and São Vicente but likewise in rural areas of islands such as Boa Vista, Sal, and the lush landscapes of Santo Antão.

Now, another step has been taken to promote innovation and entrepreneurship in Cape Verde, and hence the city of Praia will host the first-ever National Entrepreneurship Awards, organized by Projeto Ujamaa in Praia. The awards are meant to be a showcase for all the innovative ventures that crisscross over the island, from the north to the south along the sandy beaches.

These awards will recognize those businesses that have made a substantial contribution to the economy through the sharing of successful tips, while also providing stories of inspiration for both local and international aspiring entrepreneurs.

From Boa Vista to Sal - all the inhabited islands are becoming a hub for innovation in sub saharan Africa

A Spotlight on Cape Verdean Innovation

The main goal of the award is to inspire young Africans from all corners of the country, to praise their entrepreneurial spirit, and to publicly recognize the work these entrepreneurs have done. The awards ceremony will be held on March 23rd at the National Auditorium in Praia, Santiago. The awards aim to spotlight the entrepreneurial talent flourishing on the islands.

The voting process has already commenced, engaging the community in selecting their champions of innovation and entrepreneurship.

National Entrepreneurship Awards

Shaping the Future of Cape Verde’s Business Ecosystem

As the anticipation builds for the inaugural National Entrepreneurship Awards, the diversity and innovation within the list of nominees are a testament to the dynamic business landscape of Cape Verde.

Orchestrated by Projeto Ujamaa, this pioneering event spans six pivotal categories: Food, Arts, Aesthetics & Beauty, Investment, Health, and Services. Each nominee, through their unique vision and entrepreneurial spirit, is contributing to the reshaping of Cape Verde’s economic fabric. Public voting, open until March 10th, invites the community to support their favored innovators.

Let’s meet the businesses competing around the archipelago and their success stories!

Award Categories: Celebrating Diversity in Innovation

Food Category

  • Bodji Sab Sab – A brand that produces and sells canned cachupa.
  • Pastilim de Dona Graça – A project aimed at creating sustainable income.
  • Atleta Kriol Lanchonete – Offers a relaxed and interactive atmosphere, and provides healthy snacks with Cape Verdean ingredients.
  • Pinga Djond`Elena– Dedicated to raising the appreciation and value of the grog (a traditional alcoholic beverage that holds great cultural significance in Cabo Verde).
  • Gigalanche– A company active in the culinary sector that offers coffee breaks and lunch services.

Art Category

  • Nharti Artesanato e Decoração– A micro-enterprise dedicated to making lamps using discarded waste, especially PVC pipes.
  • Sonia Artes– A slipper customization company.

Aesthetics/Beauty Category

  • By Linda Rocha Beauty- A specialized esthetician and reference trainer.
  • Kuale Miniz- A salon specializing in natural hair.
  • Bell Make Up- Various services on facial aesthetics.

Investment Category

  • Chave Group – Real estate and investments in the Cabo Verde islands.

Health Category

  • Basefightclub- Determined on improving the quality of life of the population and minimizing the demand for hospital health services.
  • Lidie Clínica Dentária- A health establishment that aims to promote oral health.

Service Category

  • Telma Pires Serviços Comerciais- Buying and selling land, leasing, and filing documents with institutions/ other enterprises.
  • ED – Comercio & Prestação de Serviço, Lda – Provides services in various areas.


Finalists in each category will have eight minutes to pitch their initiatives, after which judges and the audience will cast their votes to determine the winners. The selection process prior to the event gives the public a 70% voting weight, with judges accounting for 30%. However, on the day of the event, these weights will switch, empowering the judges with a 70% influence on the final decision.

Cap Vert entrepreneurs - From the island of Santiago to Sal and Beyond.

The Prize: More Than Just an Award

This program is designed to promote personal, spiritual, and business growth under the guidance of both national and international mentors.This comprehensive support package underscores the awards’ commitment to nurturing a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem in Cabo Verde.

Winners of the National Entrepreneurship Awards will embark on a ‘7-day intensive immersion program’ designed to refine their business strategies, enhance personal leadership skills, and deepen their understanding of global market trends with the help of both national and international mentors.

This program is more than a prize; it’s a transformational journey.

Lenise Vaz: The Architect of Cape Verde’s Entrepreneurial Awakening

In a heartfelt reflection on the significance of the National Entrepreneurship Awards, Lenise Vaz, the founder of Ujamaa and the pioneering force behind Cape Verde’s first-ever entrepreneurship awards, shares her still-evolving feelings about the initiative.

“To be honest, I have yet to fully grasp what the award truly means to me. I’m following my heart,” Vaz admits. The conception of this groundbreaking award sprang from a deep-seated desire to acknowledge and elevate the work of entrepreneurs across Cape Verde, celebrating their pivotal contributions to the nation’s development.

Entrepreneur in the island - Lenise Vaz in conversation and her stories on how to improve the Cape Verdean economy

Lenise Vaz’s vision was clear: to create a platform that not only recognizes the hard work and innovation of Cape Verdean entrepreneurs but also inspires a wave of new talent to step forward. “The idea emerged from the necessity to value the endeavors of our entrepreneurs and the substantial role they play in advancing Cape Verde,” she explains.

By initiating this award, Vaz aims to spotlight the entrepreneurial excellence that thrives within the islands, encouraging a future where innovation and business acumen are key drivers of national progress.

Her dedication serves as a reminder of the power of visionary leadership in transforming the business landscape and fostering a culture of entrepreneurship that can significantly contribute to the socio-economic fabric of Cape Verde.

Empowering Innovation in Cabo Verde – Success stories

Mitza’s Contribution to Cape Verde’s Entrepreneurial Landscape

Top tips for entrepreneurs with the newest awards in the island of Santiago

In the busy world of entrepreneurship, where time is as precious as the services offered, Mitza Alfama, a competitor in the beauty category of the National Entrepreneurship Awards with Kuale Miniz , shares her exhilarating journey with CaboWork.

She confessed to registering at the eleventh hour, a decision propelled by a previous nod of recognition from Projeto Ujamaa, despite the absence of a formal competition at the time. This gesture of acknowledgment was pivotal in her decision to compete for a highly respected national award.

Mitza’s venture into the awards wasn’t just a quest for personal glory but also a stride towards impacting the social fabric of entrepreneurship. Although the social voting segment remains exclusive, the public’s enthusiasm has spilled over on social media, fostering a vibrant community of support and engagement. This overwhelming positivity fuels Mitza’s optimism and humility, especially as she stands alongside fellow entrepreneurs and colleagues with whom she has collaborated closely.

For Mitza, “This competition transcends the individual. It symbolizes a beacon of hope and motivation for the entire Cape Verdean entrepreneurial capital landscape, particularly those already navigating the market’s challenges.”

The journey to the National Entrepreneurship Awards has been nothing short of incredible for Mitza, embodying a path of growth, camaraderie, and unwavering spirit in the face of competition. Her success story is a testament to the awards’ potential to elevate entrepreneurship in Cape Verde, offering not just a platform for recognition but also an opportunity to inspire and be inspired.

A Future of Opportunity

The official language, Portuguese, bridges Cape Verde not only to Portugal but also to the broader Lusophone world, from Brazil to Angola, opening doors for international businesses and collaboration. The National Entrepreneurship Awards will serve as a platform to further this connectivity, inviting entrepreneurs from all over to explore partnerships and opportunities in this vibrant archipelago.

As the National Entrepreneurship Awards draw nearer (right around the corner on March 23) the excitement within Cape Verde’s entrepreneurial community is palpable. The event is not just a celebration of individual achievements but a collective moment of recognition for the innovative spirit driving the country forward.

Picture of CaboWork


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