Barbara Arimi, the NSSF communication and marketing officer told reporters that female entrepreneurs around the nation are fit if they dealt in commerce, technology, manufacturing and agriculture.
According to her, each business to benefit from this would receive an equivalent is $30,000 (about shs 105m). She also revealed that the program will run for the next 5 years.
However though, Arimi said before the grant is given, the pre-accelerator is the first step of the Hi-Innovator program.
She further described this as a self-directed online platform with exercises to enable entrepreneurs to apply the skills to their businesses.
The program apparently gets them ready for the next phase of receiving funding and technical assistance.
“Starting a business is never an easy task. Founders often face the challenge of having to fund each step of the enterprise’s growth while ensuring that there is a balance between inputs and outputs,” she said.
Furthermore, Arimi said these challenges, with no immediate solutions, regularly hold back a start-up’s maturity. This often result into business stagnation, hence the reason for women to receive the grant fund.
According to NSSF CEO, Richard Byarugaba, by July 2021, about 890 applications had been received. 28% of these were from females while 71% of them were from males.
Arimi revealed that the opportunity is now targeting women to motivate them to improve their growth economically to survive in this bad economy.
This development comes after the sealing of the partnership between NSSF and MasterCard Foundation in 2021.
As part of the requirements, an application must be submitted through the Hi-Innovator and idea management system to be considered. Apparently, applications submitted by email, WhatsApp or in person will not be considered.
The business has to have been active for at least two years and should have launched a product or service to the public with a revenue of at least shs 20m and customer feedback.
The business must have been fully registered with Uganda Registration Services Bureau, Uganda Revenue Authority, and NSSF.
Additionally, one must be a Ugandan or non-Ugandan currently living and working in Uganda with proper documents.
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