There is no freedom in an economy without a financial institution to support entrepreneurship and operations. Which is why an entrepreneur in South Africa wants to cut the cliché in the finance industry by opening the first Black woman-owned bank in the country.
Nthabeleng Likotsi is the entrepreneur behind the Young Women in Business Network (YMBN) whose objective is to emancipate the women of color who own businesses. Recently, she filed her paperwork regarding opening a bank dedicated to black woman empowerment.
Likotsi, 33 years of age, comes from Botshabelo, Free State. She has always been passionate about entrepreneurship with much inspiration coming from her parents who own a school uniform factory as well as a number of shops across Free State. Therefore, her family has been pivotal in molding her to be what she is including an excellent team player; working with people as well as giving back to the community.
She hopes to share the lots of inspiration drawn from the parents, with women of her community and beyond by developing a financial institution dubbed Young Women in Business Network (YMBN) Mutual. This bank will be giving loans to small businesses owned by black women who cannot secure funds from the conventional financial institutions. She believes that she can bring black people to work together because she has the right tool to activate that unity across the community.
Likotsi believes that economic freedom can be achieved by having a financial institution, which will support the Black entrepreneurs. Therefore, since there is no such institution in South Africa, she hopes to open one by 2019. Other than Likotsi’s efforts, there are other attempts made to help the Black entrepreneurs succeed in their ventures. For instance, in May, a venture capitalist firm Backstage Capital asserted they would commit to investing $36 million across several entrepreneurial endeavors owned by African American Women.