The Brief: The IFC Invests in Ghanaian Businesswomen

IFC Invests in Women Entrepreneurs in Ghana With A New Financial Programme

Part of the World Bank, the International Finance Cooperation (IFC) has recently produced an initiative which encourages the access of financial investments and advisory services to women entrepreneurs in Ghana. The IFC plans to communicate with selected financial organisations, locating opportunities in the Ghanaian financial market.

Jessica Schnabel, who holds the position of Global Product Head for this initiative, spoke at a conference in Accra. “IFC believe that products which support women should be commercial…women are the next emerging market and forward-looking banks are targeting women customers as a core growth strategy,” said Schnabel, stressing the wealth of undiscovered potential in Ghanaian female business owners.

Studies in the 2018 Mastercard Index of Entrepreneurs shows that women in Ghana account for 46.4% of the SME landscape, emphasising a greater necessity for strengthening, identifying and upholding economic support for female entrepreneurs.

Structural disadvantages, unequal access to financial resources and information present some barriers for women in Ghana wanting an entrepreneurial career. As such, IFC Country Manager Ronke-Amoni Ogunsulire believes that this will empower female entrepreneurs.

According to Ogunsulire, IFC have “…a lot of products to offer, they include debt financing, equity financing, balance, sheet risk management, mobilisation and syndication among others. All these are to help women reach the stage where they will be driving the economy.’ IFC’s programme offers positive change and growth for businesswomen in Ghana.

BitPesa Extends It Services to Ghana

Established in 2013, Kenyan-based startup Bitpesa launches in Ghana.

BitPesa increases the speed of payments to and from other markets. Offering new currencies to Ghanaians, Ghana can now set-up payments in more than 10 currencies.

The company “are constantly looking for ways to promote African trade, so we’ve every excited about our services in Ghana,” said Elizabeth Rossiello, CEO of BitPesa. Concerned with improving trade within the African region, BitPesa have future plans to decrease expenses involved in payments between West African countries and its neighbours.

BitPesa is now paired with two mobile networks and intends to provide more services to Ghanaian customers.

Autism Aid App Connects With Sorokno Academy in Ghana

The Autism Aid App has partnered with Sorokno Academy providing autism awareness sessions before World Autism Awareness Day, which takes place on 2nd April 2018.

Concerned with autism’s impact on children in Ghana and a need for greater awareness, the Autism Aid App is a new Android app for West Africa, which provides a helpline service, professional information and a Picture Exchange Communication System for children.

Alice Mamaga Akosua Amoako, an ambassador of the app, believes that “it is time for all of us to accept children living with Autism in the society and give them the adequate resources needed to help them live an enabling life.” As such, the Autism App offers positive societal change and greater guidance.

Full Ownership for Cocoa Farmers in Ghana

As announced during the UN International Day of Forests, Ghanaian cocoa farmers in the Western region now have fulltime ownership of non-cocoa tress within their farms.

Supported by the World Cocoa Foundation (WCF), these farmers successfully aimed a petition at the Ghanaian government for registered ownership of trees grown and nurtured within their cocoa farms.

Official control over trees within personal farms has several benefits for Ghanaian farmers. Ethan Budiansky, WCF Environment Director, states that this development allows “cocoa farmers to include shade trees as part of their business plans. Growing cocoa alongside shade trees helps farmers confront the effects of climate change and provides additional sources of income.” Cocoa farmers now have greater protection and economic gain from their registered trees.