Remodelled YouWiN to mobilise N2.5 billion for SMEs
The move to give small businesses in the country the required support for take-off and survival may have received fresh boost as the retooled pet project of the current administration – YouWiN! Connect is targeting a N2.5 billion funding under co-investment model.
The development demonstrates government’s commitment to empower start-ups and early stage SMEs, providing innovative solutions to local challenges in Nigeria.
The YouWiN! Connect scheme is aimed at attracting qualified fund managers under a co-investment model that would mobilise up to N2.5 billion yearly as equity investment in start-ups and early stage of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
This is coming just as the Federal Government reaffirmed that SMEs are engine of growth that stimulate and sustain development, making the moves necessary as part of efforts to strengthen small-scale businesses and promote industrialisation in the quest for economic recovery.
The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, reiterated that the Federal Government has a renewed focus on key economic sectors in line with the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, with emphasis on SME-led growth in agriculture, energy, technology, manufacturing, industry and key services.
“The revival of these sectors, coupled with increased investment in other sectors, less reliance on foreign exchange for intermediate goods, raw materials and greater export orientation, will improve macroeconomic conditions, restore growth in the short term, help to create jobs and bring about structural change,” she said.
Specifically, the fund managers would be expected to demonstrate a strong track record in investing in and advising early stage SMEs, with knowledge of diverse sectors and a clearly defined investment strategy.
The initiative is also aimed at ensuring that fund managers can actively and positively contribute to improving business performance by bringing on-board their experiences and having skin in the game, by providing some of the required capital.
The YouWiN! Connect is an initiative of the Federal Ministry of Finance that wants to support young entrepreneurs, as they plan, start and grow their businesses.According to the minister, the scheme seeks to promote entrepreneurship as a viable career option for young Nigerians, which in turn, will create jobs and wealth.
Already, the government is expecting that additional impact of the scheme will include social inclusion, job creation, youth empowerment and improved human capital.
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