Three thousand Ghanaian businesses have been selected from across the country to benefit from a GH¢30 million funding package from the government to scale up their businesses.
The beneficiaries were selected from the 19,000 participants of the Second Window of the Presidential Business Support Programme, an initiative of the Ministry of Business Development.
The businesses selected for funding are in agri-business and agro-processing, trading, and Information Communication Technology (ICT), sports, tourism and recreation and sanitation, waste management, green and ecological businesses.
Others are in health, food and beverages, fashion (clothing & accessories), media, marketing and communications, manufacturing and industrial processing, real estate and construction, transport, logistics and professional services.
They will receive between GH¢10,000 and GH¢100,000, in addition to continuous training and capacity building, mentorship and business advisory services, free accounting services, access to business networking opportunities, among others.
Speaking at the Second Window of the Presidential Business Support Programme at the Jubilee House in Accra yesterday, President Akufo-Addo said the programme was designed to offer funding to Ghanaian start-ups, as well as small and medium size businesses which constitute over 80 per cent of all businesses in the country.
He said the programme is expected to provide Ghanaian businesses and start-ups with technical support, training, mentorship and business advisory services.
To qualify for the support, he said the business had to be Ghanaian owned, a Micro, Small or Medium scale enterprise either at start-up stage or already existing business that needs support for growth
Other criteria include the ability to scale-up, a business with a sustainability or growth model, and the ability to employ other people through innovation, he said.
President Akufo-Addo urged the beneficiaries to be prepared to go through intensive structured entrepreneurship training programme and mentorship.
He congratulated the entrepreneurs behind the businesses for their dedication and hard work and urged them to seize the opportunity provided by the Presidential Business Support Programme to demonstrate their entrepreneurial ability.
“I am reliably informed that over 20,000 direct jobs and many more indirect jobs were created by the beneficiaries of the Presidential Business Support Programme Window One,” he said and entreated beneficiaries of the second window to create a minimum of 30,000 direct jobs.
The Minister of Business Development, Dr Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, on his part, said over the last 10 months, his Ministry has implemented seven initiatives aimed at strengthening the country’s entrepreneurial eco-system.
These initiatives are the Presidential Business Support Programme (PBSP), the Presidential Pitch, the Campus Business Pitch and Student Entrepreneurship Initiative.
The others are Presidential Empowerment for Women with Disability, World Business Angels Investment Forum and Green Business, he said.
Dr Awal therefore encouraged the youth to take advantage of the Ministry’s entrepreneurship initiatives to establish their own businesses in order to help create jobs and improve livelihoods.
Touching on the Presidential Business Support Programme, he entreated the beneficiaries to endeavour to repay the loans on schedule, adding that recovery rate from last year’s beneficiaries of the PBSP is more than 70 per cent.
BY YAW KYEI