20 November 2012

Rwanda: Businesses Should Focus On Creating Impact - Expert

Local entrepreneurs need to focus on rural poor communities in order to improve the latter's livelihoods as a key element towards boosting the country's Gross Domestic Product-GDP as well as inclusive growth, experts have revealed.

Teta Isibo emerged the winner and bagged the Rwf 2 million cash prize. Isibo is the proprietor of Inzuki Designs, a business that exports locally made crafts online.

Experts say that inclusive businesses that provide markets for products produced locally that could also be exported will bolster the country's economy.

"For the country to achieve its vision, there is need for businesses which can create a social impact and I have no doubt that this can be achieved," Andrais Noerlem Christensen, Chief Executive Officer of Educat told Business Times in an exclusive interview in Kigali.

"Entrepreneurs should aim at working hard and the important thing is that you have to be a doer, not only think out of the box but do out of the box," he said.

To enhance such efforts, Educat, a Danish not for profit organisation sponsored a business competition dubbed the Real Business Accelerator.

Teta Isibo emerged the winner and bagged the Rwf 2 million cash prize.

Isibo is the proprietor of Inzuki Designs, a business that exports locally made crafts online. Real Business Accelerator Award 2012 was organised by Educat under the Global Entrepreneurship week that ended on Saturday this month.

The Entrepreneurship event was organised by Babson Rwanda in partnership with Ministry of ICT and Youth, Rwanda Development Board and several other stakeholders aimed at motivating, mentoring and promoting entrepreneurship in the country.

Christensen said that Isibo beat 10 other contenders as her business exhibited the potential to bring about social impact and create a national brand for Rwanda.

"She has an entrepreneurial mindset to unfold a full potential of a business idea," he said, adding that she would represent the country in the Meet The Lions Competition scheduled to take place in May next year.

Isibo, an urban planning graduate, said that she aims to help local artisans boost their incomes by increasing the price of their products.

"I want to expand my business so that I can buy more crafts and increase market for the products which will increase incomes for craft makers especially women," she said

Central Bank estimates the country's economy to grow at 7.7 per cent this year in the back of strong monetary policy measures and improved business environment that has facilitated private sector growth.

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