What is a Start Up Ecosystem and why do we need one? Governments all over the world have identified that High Growth Firms make strong contributions to a country’s economy: providing jobs, paying taxes and generating export income. In order to encourage these firms to start up and grow, certain conditions are necessary. Alongside a thriving entrepreneurial culture, supportive policies need to be in place with universities and private organisations providing appropriate training for entrepreneurs. Finally, access to capital is critical, so banks, micro finance organisations, angel and institutional investors all need opportunities to meet with and understand the small businesses and start ups as often as possible.

Why is Rwanda’s ecosystem so important? The private sector and start up support Ecosystem is growing exceedingly quickly in Rwanda, as private organisations and development partners are aligned with the objectives expressed in Vision 2050 and the 2018-2024 National Strategy for Transformation Plan (NST1). The Strategy expects to create 1.5m jobs as a result of private sector initiatives. The number of new incubators, accelerators and training initiatives on offer in Rwanda is exciting and positive for our young entrepreneurs.

Imanzi Business Institute (IBI) convenes Ecosystem organisations. With access to more than 20,000 existing small business and a reputation for Expo and Made in Rwanda, IBI’s parent organisation, the Private Sector Federation is ideally placed to communicate to as wide an audience as possible. By convening the organisations active in the Start Up Ecosystem, IBI can work to ensure that entrepreneurs are supported efficiently and effectively and that new Ecosystem organisations do not duplicate existing offerings.

Are you involved in Rwanda’s Start Up Ecosystem? Want to know more? Please get in touch with the Imanzi Business Institute team by contacting info@ibi.org.rw.

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