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Rwanda Entrepreneurs get Advice on Raising Capital

Rwanda Entrepreneurs get Advice on Raising Capital

Rwanda Entrepreneurs get Advice on Raising Capital

Start-ups in Rwanda, as elsewhere in the world, are faced with many challenges; particularly raising capital. However, money Lenders such as Banks, equity investors as well as other players disagree with entrepreneurs, claiming that entrepreneurs lack basic infrastructure which are necessary to judge whether or not the business is capable of adequately using that money, and paying it back.

It is in that regard that we invited Mr Eric Rutabana during the GROW quarterly get together event that took place on Friday the27th March 2015 in Rwanda. Mr Rutabana is the country Manager for Business Partners International with many years of experience as an investment analyst.

He emphasized that start- ups priority should not be to chase Loans. ‘If you believe in your business idea, and you don’t have loan security try friends, family and fools, get a small seed capital, invest it adequately so you can have a positive record that will help convince financiers to lend you money to scale up your project. There is no short cut!’ he said.

Eric also argued that Grow clients should take enough time to prepare; to make sure they have information on why they are selling at a specific price, how the competition is doing and who is going to buy their products/services etc. Following the presentation, clients took time to ask questions and one of our clients who has an investor on board shared his experience. The event was concluded by a networking session over soft drinks and snacks. GROW Rwanda runs quarterly networking events in Kigali, Rwanda.

Mr Eric Rutabana talks to Grow Rwanda

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

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UK Grow VC travels to Uganda and Malawi

UK Grow VC travels to Uganda and Malawi

UK Grow VC travels to Uganda and Malawi

For the last four weeks Steve Hindle, a Grow VC for Uganda and MSc in Development Studies Candidate has been in Malawi, researching for his dissertation on private sector development. Hear what he has to say…

“I have been privileged to spend time with the Malawi Grow team, particularly Sophie and Willie, and spoke to about a dozen Grow entrepreneurs who have been working with Volunteer Consultants. They love to speak about the impact that their discussions with their VC has made to their businesses and lives. I am struck by how similar the themes are – the benefits they see of starting to keep accurate written records, the knowledge that they are now in control of their cashflow, and can confidently plan any potential investments, and the importance to them of having someone to discuss their marketing ideas with, who can support them in bringing ideas into action.

Grow entrepreneur Naomi with Sophie Kumwanje

I’m now in Kampala, where I have had interesting discussions with Mohammed, Grow’s Uganda manager. I’ve also met up with my own Grow client Moses, and we will shortly visit the school where he is a director, and I’ll be fascinated to see the place that we have been discussing over the last few months.

I’m lucky to have had this time – many of my colleague VCs will only have the chance to see the difference that they make to their own clients. We can’t do everything – problems such as the lack of access to finance, poor infrastructure and lack of affordable business development schemes require concerted efforts by both government, private sector and the donor community.

But what I can say, without any doubt, is that the work of the Grow country teams and us VCs increases these entrepreneurs’ skills and abilities to take control of both their businesses and their lives, and the impact will long outlast the short period of time that we are involved.

If you ever get a chance to visit Malawi, Uganda or Rwanda, do make time to meet with the Grow teams and visit some entrepreneurs. It’s an amazing way to see first-hand how a determined entrepreneur can use Grow’s support to transform their business. ”

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

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