Making women entrepreneurs with We-Fi | Daily News


ADB partnership with Women’s Chamber of Industry and Commerce

Making women entrepreneurs with We-Fi

Ecosystem building was important for the success of female entrepreneurs because access to market is limited to the women entrepreneur, Project Officer, Asian Development Bank (ADB), Takuya Hoshino said in Colombo on Tuesday.

“The legal and remunerative environment is not conducive to women entrepreneurs to start a business. All these factors are interlinked with each other so we have to address these different issues at the same time to address the whole issue of access to finance,”he said.

He added, “If women entrepreneurs are rich they can get the money from the family. This is not the common case. We provide this We-Fi grant together with the bank. Equity finance and debt finance with women entrepreneurs can quickly give get their business,” he said at the launch of ADB partnership with the Women’s Chamber of Industry and Commerce to support women to access financial support for businesses.

Hoshino highlighted the ADB partnership with Women Entrepreneurs Finance Initiative (We-Fi) to provide financing for entrepreneurs. He said there was a need to help female entrepreneurs.

He said, “All over the world collateralized based lending is the mainstream business. The credit is very simple. You can have a good business proposal but the question is whether you can actually implement it. If you are capable but perhaps your business might be external factors that you cannot control. That is why banks have to take it into account. That is important to the banking system and it is the foundation for businesses to grow.”

He added, “In Japan, there are so many government subsidies to these businesses. There are grant matching schemes. There are financial intuitions to provide financing. This is not free money. The current evaluation is done by the private sector. The government is providing a supplement funding or a partial risk exposure of the borrower.”

Head of Development Finance, Bank of Ceylon Ganga Weerakkody said, “It is important to register a business. It will solve a lot of problems in the future for you. Banks are not compelled to help if your documentation isn’t considered.”

Weerakkody who overlooks ‘Enterprise Sri Lanka’ disbursements at BOC said there were many schemes currently open at the banks. She said “There are some weaknesses in the processes of the country. Bankers have the responsibility to make the path for women entrepreneurs.”

Managing Director NDB Zephyr, Senaka Kakiriwaragodage said that it was important for companies to maintain documentation. He said, “We have seen companies maintaining multiple accounting systems and sometimes to hide things.”

On what companies can do to improve Kakiriwaragodage added: “Moving to a common platform, sometimes it might be SAGE or SAP; there would be a peace of mind factor.”



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