By John Elliot HAGAN, Accra
The National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programme (NEIP) is calling on prospective applicants or businesses to enter applications for Window 2 of the NEIP Presidential Business Support Programme (PBSP).
The Window 2 application seeks to provide co-ordinated support to businesses in Ghana in terms of training, business advisory services, incubation support, technical and financial support for start-ups, micro, small and medium enterprises in Ghana.
At the end of Window 2, NEIP seeks to support about 2,000 businesses with seed capital fund ranging from GH₵10,000 to GH₵100,000.
Application was officially opened from yesterday and would be closed on March 30, 2019, after which late applications would not be considered.
Speaking at a press conference at the NEIP offices in Accra yesterday to announce the call for Window 2 applications, Chief Executive Officer of NEIP, Mr John Kumah noted that those who applied in Window 1 can apply again for Window 2, provided that they have completed paying the loans they received in Window 1, and he urged more women to apply in Window 2.
He also seized the opportunity to announce that about 80 per cent of the beneficiaries in Window 1 have completed paying for the loans disbursed to them.
How to apply
All applicants are requested to complete a detailed application form at www.neip.gov.gh, including the payment of a non-refundable registration fee of GH₵100 at any National Investment Bank (NIB) branch.
The application can be submitted online via www.neip.gov.gh, where applicants would find detailed information regarding the content of the application, eligibility criteria and selection procedure, among others.
The selection procedure begins for applicants with the submission of completed application forms and payment of non-refundable fee.
After that, all applicants would be posted to the incubation hubs for pre-selection training and supported to write a business plan.
At this stage, applicants are supposed to submit completed business plans for review and selection, during which the shortlisted finalist would be invited to the incubation hubs for final training and pitching.
Finally, the shortlisted finalists would be prepared for due diligence and disbursement of funds.
Mr Kumah cautioned prospective applicants to be wary of fraudsters who are working to dupe people along the NEIP programme.
“Do not pay money to anyone. The entire application process is on our website. Don’t accept any text message or email asking you to complete your application or fill any form. If you are in doubt of any message received, you can call the NEIP official phone numbers on our website to seek for clarification.”
In the first window, the programme received applications from well over 7,000 businesses and all these businesses were trained in 50 incubation hubs across the country.
At the end of the training, the incubation hubs selected 1,350 businesses to be funded, including groups and business associations.
All the 1,350 businesses received the funding last year August and September, and have started payment on the funds received, and evidence is on their website –www.neip.gov.gh.
The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, launched NEIP in July 2017 with a $10 million seed fund, and the private sector partner is required to leverage the fund to raise additional $100 million funding for the project, which is expected to deliver about one million jobs.
NEIP, under the auspices of the Ministry of Business Development, is one of the flagship initiatives of President Akufo-Addo’s government which is aimed at supporting young entrepreneurs to grow their businesses.
NEIP has the objective of providing an integrated national support for startups and small businesses focusing on the provision of business development services, business incubators and funding.
Source: The Finder