SME’s graduate from Stanbic mentor-ship programme
Kampala August 24- According to the 2015 Global Entrepreneurs Monitor (GEM) report, Uganda had the best entrepreneurship growth rate at 28%. However, the country also suffers a high mortality rate for new enterprises with more than half of start-ups not surviving to celebrate their first anniversary.
Although limited access to finance has often been cited as one of the factors behind the high SME failure rates in Uganda, poor financial management, a lack of proper bookkeeping and business management skills have also been identified as key contributors.
Now, Uganda’s largest lender, Stanbic is hoping to reverse this trend through a mentoring Program targeting SME’s.
Today, leaders from 210 SME’s that have since July,2015 been undergoing a Stanbic Bank sponsored mentorship programme run by Enterprise Uganda graduated with certificates. The programme aims to equip SME leaders with the skills that can help them grow and sustain their businesses.
“We know that most of the business people lack skills and information yet they are some of the largest employers and generate a considerable amount of tax revenue. We thought this initiative was very
important in addressing some of these challenges,” Kevin Wingfield Stanbic’s head of personal and business banking said.
“This initiative helps us understand business better. Through this process we are able to understand and get answers to some questions like what the business need to grow, is the business generating cash flow, how much money have they made in the business and can it remain sustainable?”, he added.
Charles Ocici the Executive Director at Enterprise Uganda said that since the graduation comes at a time when big companies are clamoring for bailouts, it goes further to show that the training was very necessary.
“The SMEs which benefited from the training need to hold unto the four pillars of leadership and governance, talent management, Operations and marketing and customer care if they want sustainability for their businesses. Without these pillars, companies cannot survive even if they have capital to run them,” Ocici said.