Invest in Africa is a private sector initiative tailored to Sub-Saharan businesses. The sector will charge zero on membership-based services to services engaged in the fight against COVID-19. The package applies to both small and medium-sized (SME) businesses. Having launched a “COVID-19 SME Survival Toolkit” that will include Webinars, practical guidelines, solutions, and recommendations. All material is available online and tailored for the African SME.
IIA was established back in 2002, the initiative runs in Kenya, Ghana, Mauritania, Zambia, and Senegal. It strives to promote their growth and increase its competitive edge in the continent. IIA provides training, improved access to finance, and mitigation of supply chain risks. Any SME within the continent can access this program through the Invest in Africa website.
William Pollen, the CEO of IIA, points out how the vast majority of businesses in Africa are SMEs meaning they are the biggest employer too. With that in mind, IIA is offering a financial lifeline that is crucial to their “longer term economic growth prospects.” Given that most businesses this 2020 are keen on survival, IIA can help them emerge stronger and resilient.
Equity Group MD and Chief Executive Dr. James Mwangi pointed out that African economies are ” predominantly SME led” and mentioned how the impact of the virus will affect the “national economy and the individual SME businesses.”
SME Lightingale Ltd, Godwin Locher, endorsed the role played by IIA during the COVID-19 public health crisis, giving it a thumbs-up as a “great initiative.”
Invest in Africa works with several partner organizations such as the UK Department for International Trade in Africa. Among the programs launched thus far by IIA meant for small businesses is ‘The 100-Day COVID-19 Business Recovery Plan.’