Green businesses in Uganda are being urged to apply to an accelerator programme that offers free finance-focused workshops and discounted loans to help them scale up.
The Ugandan Green Enterprise Finance Accelerator (UGEFA) is looking to help high-potential small and medium-sized enterprises that specialise in eco-tourism, clean energy, sustainable transport, waste management and green manufacturing, including agro-processing, turning raw crops in finished products like textiles and dried fruit.
Applications to join UGEFA’s accelerator programme open today and close on 30 November. During the six-month programme, successful applicants will receive customised business development support from expert advisors. This tailored scheme incudes capacity building workshops and peer learning, delivered by implementation partners, adelphi and Finding XY.
After graduating from the UGEFA programme, enterprises are matched with banking partners. If they prove to be investible they are provided loans, 33% of which is covered by UGEFA, through funding from the European Union.
According to the Uganda Green Growth Development Strategy, an economy that considers people and planet, as well as profit, can boost GDP by 10 per cent and create four million jobs two decades from now.
This will require significant investment, however, with US$11 billion needed by 2024. Overcoming current funding barriers is critical to unlocking the country’s green economy. UGEFA will help eligible businesses ensure they meet the requirements of lenders so they can get access to the money they need to grow.
Businesses that are eligible (see criteria below) can receive support through the application process during application clinics – improving their business plans and ensuring they have necessary financial documentation. They will also provide networking opportunities with peers and business advisors and ensure that businesses gain a comprehensive understanding of the loan application process.
Commenting on the latest call for applications, Adelphi Executive Board Member, Rainer Agster said: “The current pandemic is a massive challenge for all enterprises, but it also provides an opportunity for a transformation towards a greener economy. UGEFA wants to work with enterprises accelerating this green transformation in Uganda. We are looking forward to receiving applications by green enterprises, who want to work with us and our partners.”
Finding XY’s Programme Lead Eddie Sembatya added: “The level of ingenuity among Uganda’s green entrepreneurs is second to none. We need to maximise their impact and that is why we are urging eligible businesses to submit applications to the programme and help transform Uganda’s business landscape.”