Uganda’s cooperatives to benefit from Stanbic skills centreAsiimwe exchanges copies of the MoU with Otoa, that involves helping to streamline the business operations of UCCA member societies across the country.
The Stanbic Business Incubator Centre and Uganda Cooperative Alliance (UCA) have signed a memorandum of understanding to help streamline the business operations of member societies across the country.
It entails apartnership and collaboration in the development and sustainability of cooperative businesses through enterprise development, specialised training and information dissemination as well as to strengthen the mutual relationships and benefits between the two Parties.
Speaking during the MoU signing ceremony, Tony O. Otoa, the Executive Director Stanbic Business Incubator Limited, said the new partnership will allow them to extend the services of the Incubator to Uganda’s cooperative movement.
He said, “The Stanbic Business Centre provides an enabling environment for entrepreneurs in small and medium size enterprises to acquire the knowhow to ensure the sustainability of their enterprises. Among other programmes, through this partnership, we shall jointly develop and implement a series of initiatives on National Content suited for the UCA member societies.”
Stanbic Business Incubator Limited established the Business Incubator Centre to promote capacity building and business development services by way of offering training on different business aspects, sharing information and enterprise development.
The facility is contributing towards the promotion of local content by addressing the key challenges facing small enterprises (SMEs) in the various sectors of economy. In collaboration with key stakeholders such as the Petroleum Authority of Uganda (PAU), Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC) and other JV Partners, over 1000 businesses have been trained to date and prepared to supply Uganda’s budding Oil & Gas industry at all levels.
“The Business Incubator will organize and facilitate joint learning, experience sharing and training sessions for the UCA member societies based on their enterprise needs. We shall also mobilise funding to help with the cooperatives’ incubation programmes and source additional specialised expert training partners in aspects of Enterprise Development and Technology innovation,” Otoa said.
Commenting on the partnership Ivan Asiimwe, the General Secretary, Uganda Cooperative Alliance said the partnership will go a long way in improving financial management and efficiency at the various cooperatives across the country.
“Uganda Cooperative Alliance is the umbrella body for all cooperatives in Uganda. One of our core responsibilities is to help build the capacity of these cooperatives. The Stanbic Business Incubator has had a major positive impact on SMEs and we want to tap the skills and knowhow being offered at the Centre to boost the capacity of our member societies. We shall also conduct ecosystem mapping and profile cooperatives business technologies for commercialization in the selected districts or areas of common interest,” he said.
The Stanbic Business Incubator started in 2018 as an initiative of Stanbic Bank to support and nurture SMEs to prepare for and harness business and growth opportunities. The Incubator has so far trained over 660 Small and Medium Enterprise and 1,746 entrepreneurs.
Asiimwe said they will also develop mentorship and incubation programmes for their various members in business management designed for the cooperative value-chain and also facilitate business development or partner with cooperatives business partners.
UCA is an umbrella organization for all cooperatives in Uganda established in 1961. It serves as the voice of the cooperative movement at both national and international level with a mandate to recommend to government on matters of policy relating to cooperatives arbitration, advocate and represent cooperatives interests, capacity building of cooperators in cooperative business practices, provide business skills development support, advisory services and mobilize resources for cooperative movement in Uganda.
The Business Incubator provides an enabling environment for entrepreneurs through the following programmes:
- Business Development Services.
- Training and follow-up support interventions.
- Networking Events, focus group discussions and access to subject matter experts.
- Mentoring and coaching of entrepreneurs after formal training
- Provide avenues for accessing markets and sourcing of funds