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Empowering Women in Agribusiness: Access Bank Boosts Three Ventures with GH¢100,000.00 Each

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Empowering Women in Agribusiness: Access Bank Boosts Three Ventures with GH¢100,000.00 Each

Access Bank supports 3 women-led agribusinesses with GH¢ 100,000.00 each -  The Business & Financial Times

Access Bank has provided funding support to three women entrepreneurs within the agribusiness sector.

Each of the beneficiaries received a seed capital of GH¢100,000.00 through the “Access W” initiative, specifically Womenpreneur Pitch-A-Thon programme to upscale their business and consequently increase their access to capital.

Out of a total of 50 female entrepreneurs who participated in the 2023 Womenpreneur Pitch-A-Thon, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Sava Shea, Ruth Wewura Guribi; Founder of Ayden Ventures, Rosemond Afua Afful, and the CEO of Tropical Snack, Augustina Akosua Asor Tufuor, emerged the top three winners of the programme and received the ultimate prize of  GH¢100,000.00 each.

Launched in 2019, the five-months duration programme is designed to provide female owned businesses across Africa an opportunity to access finance, world-class business training as well as mentoring opportunities aimed at growing their businesses.

Outlining the factors that catapulted the three ladies to the top, the Executive Director for Retail and Digital Banking at Access Bank, Pearl Nkrumah, indicated that the judges and partners believe that their ideas were great and had a proof of concept.

Highlighting the objectives of the programme, she espoused that it is aimed at inspiring and empowering women, by making them investor ready. It also provides them a platform to showcase their products with the support of their partners – Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Agriculture and Finance Consultants (AFC).

Additionally, she stressed on access to market as another focus for the programme, noting that this is realised by inculcating in the women all the behaviours that businesses need to do to be bankable.

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The fifth edition of the programme targeted women in the agribusiness value chain to purposely attain a multiplier effect- job creation and value addition.

“We want the multiplier effect. We want to create more jobs and ensure that we are adding value to our basic products. There are a lot of opportunities in these areas and I think we have not harnessed all that exist in this sector,” she explained.

Commenting on the contributions of the seed capital to her business, Ms. Guribi said “the amount will go a long way to help me restructure my business, procure equipment to enhance productivity and employ more people”.

According to her, the programme has demystified some concepts and issues within the agric space and has afforded beneficiaries the opportunity to better understand their business.

While she admits access to finance for SMEs as a key challenge, she called on financial institutions to make their terms and conditions of lending flexible for entrepreneurs.

For her part, the Group Head, Retail Banking at Access Bank, Matilda Asante-Asiedu, assured all the 50 finalists of her outfit’s unwavering support in their entrepreneurial journey, adding that the bank plans to introduce a Womenpreneur Alumni group, as a demonstration of its commitment.

“Your continuous growth is our priority and to solidify our commitment, we proudly introduce the Womenpreneur Alumni group. This platform will unite all finalists from 2020 to the present, fostering a powerful community of shared experiences and mutual support,” she noted.

The Project Lead for the GIZ AgriBiz Programme, Christoph Pannhause, said the focus of the programme fits into their objective of “creating a more conducive environment for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), especially in the agribusiness sector to create employment and make them competitive”.

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Source: Thebftonline

 

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