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Dfcu Bank to empower more 1,000 SMEs through ADC Business Accelerator Program

William Sekabembe, Ag. CEO dfcu Bank addressing the new cohorts during the launch of the Business Accelerator Program. COURTESY PHOTO.

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Dfcu Bank’s Agribusiness Development Centre and Rabo Foundation have partnered with GOPA Worldwide consultants to implement two consecutive cohorts of the Business Accelerator Program (BAP).

The initiative which is in line with the national program of Enhancing the Competitiveness of Small and Medium Enterprises (ECOS) is funded by the Deutsche Gesellschafts fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.

The 2-year nationwide project is aimed at increasing the competitiveness of 1,000 Ugandan SMEs, creating 3,000 jobs, and improving employment situations of 22,000 people.

Charles Elibu, the in charge of partnerships at GOPA Worldwide (ECOS said they hope the program will create momentum for SMEs not only to grow but to be sustainable and create jobs.

“Our core intervention areas are innovation and utilization, access to finance, market development and quality management,” he said.

Speaking on behalf of the Dutch Embassy, Ms. Heide Oranje applauded the partners for their commitment to growth in agribusiness and socio-economic development.

Josephine Mukumbya, Executive Director at ADC, said a multi-dimensional approach entailing a combination of training, mentoring, coaching and technical assistance will be used for the program.

“We shall integrate key themes of gender and green growth for sustainability within the training modules, the outcome of which being enterprises developing strategies on the same as well as establishing key indicators to track women participation in SME leadership,” she said.

“By the end of 2023, 50 jobs will be created by the enterprises graduated from the program, 100 intern jobs created contractually within the enterprises and a 10% increase in incomes of trained and linked Agribusinesses,” she added.

She said ADC’s mandate of capacity building of agribusinesses to bankability and self-sufficiency for enhanced incomes and job creation is well aligned to the ECOS project’s goal.

Since inception, dfcu Bank has shown great commitment to the Agricultural sector through supporting farmer communities through tailored Agri-products.

William Sekabembe, Ag. CEO and Managing Director of dfcu Bank reiterated the Bank’s commitment to supporting the agriculture sector especially women.

“There is no Uganda without Agriculture and SME…This partnership is our commitment to continue investing in the women of this nation that shoulder the economic burden in their families and feel the brunt of policies that are not aligned to their needs. We want to empower more women enterprises as we continue to collaborate with and listen to them and tailor make solutions. I take this momentous occasion to congratulate all our partners and commit our full support to this project. Together we shall make remarkable progress,” he said.

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