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Open University Graduate and ILM Fellow runs London Marathon

Open University Graduate and ILM Fellow runs London Marathon

Open University Graduate and ILM Fellow runs London Marathon

Grow’s Scotland Country Manager, Jeremy Roebuck based up in Edinburgh is running the London Marathon for Grow Movement on Sunday 26th April.

Jeremy, a Fellow of the Institute of Leadership and Management and a graduate from the Open University Business School is heavily involved as a volunteer for Grow Movement. He acts as a mentor for the Grow Rwanda Country Manager, Eric Iyaremye, as the Scotland Country Manager and is also part of the #uganda600 recruitment team. Good luck Jeremy!!Sponsor Jeremy!

For the work that Jeremy under takes with Grow Movement he has been nominated for an award with the Open University. If you are an OUBS alumni, please get your class mates voting!

https://www.open.ac.uk/business-school/alumni/news-and-events/alumni-awards

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

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Grow’s Award Winning Chairman!

Grow’s Award Winning Chairman!

Grow’s Award Winning Chairman!

At the Royal Institution on 26 March, Mark Neild, MD of Reading based Agileering Ltd Cass Business School Alumni and ILM Fellow was awarded Mentor of the Year 2014 for the Thames Valley Region. Nominated for his work coaching African entrepreneurs through the charity Grow Movement, CEO Claire Jenkins noted “As well as inspiring his Rwandan client to new heights, Mark has been doing amazing things to support Grow Movement consultants more widely. His insights into best practice in motivating and enabling our clients; and explaining when teaching, coaching or mentoring works best are hugely appreciated by our volunteer consultants. His patient pragmatic coaching style is highly effective.”

In the UK, Mark is best known as one of the Mentors in residence at Reading’s new innovation hub Grow@Green Park, which launched in summer 2014. Co-founder Adam Clark praised Mark’s “great talent for cutting through complexity – getting straight to “cause and effect”. He sees the bigger picture clearly but also is exceptionally good at all those fiddly details you miss when you’re too close to your own business.” Mark is also a mentor and judge for the City University City Spark start-up competition and coached at the Oxford Launch event at Said Business School last autumn. Thames Valley SMEs benefit from his expertise in strategy and leadership coaching through Growth Accelerator the Government backed scheme that supports business growth in smaller firms.

Mark Neild Grow Chair with CMI CEO

In January, Mark took over as Chairman of Grow Movement and is now leading the charity through its own major growth program to deliver 100 times more impact by 2020. His first tasks were to commission a new workflow and knowledge management system and enter a collaboration agreement with the London Business School for a breakthrough study into the impact of entrepreneur education on alleviating poverty in Uganda. “We are running 600 projects with entrepreneurs in Uganda in the second half of this year – the scale is a little nerve-racking, but the opportunity to prove that effective coaching leads to growth is fantastic. We are really keen to recruit more business people to volunteer at www.GrowMovement.org. We use phone and video conferencing so there is no need to travel, making it by far the most cost-effective economic growth

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

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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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Welcoming Judith Oyella to Team Uganda

Welcoming Judith Oyella to Team Uganda

Welcoming Judith Oyella to Team Uganda

Monday March 2nd we welcomed Judith Oyella to Team Uganda. We are all excited to have a new sister in the Grow Movement family. Judith has a degree in Business Administration and Management and a passion for computers. Previously she has volunteered with Alliance for African Assistance, an NGO working with displaced person in Northern Uganda, as well as being a key leader in her local Catholic Church as a Zonal Leader. She has 9 years of experience in the Field of Finance and Administration.

Judith will be working alongside Mohammed and picking up many of the projects that Grace Akullo used to run after her 2 week induction.

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

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