Barclays Bank Zambia Plc and Nyamuka Zambia Business Plan Competition have partnered in a deal that will see the banking giant become the anchor sponsor for the 2016 season of the competition. The Bank has committed a total of K500,000 in a sponsorship package which is aimed at stimulating interest in entrepreneurship as a source of personal and national development. This is in a bid to address unemployment in the country where it is estimated that about 80% of the population is below 30 years.

The Nyamuka Business Plan Competition is funded by UKaid and is part of the five-year Private Enterprise Programme Zambia (PEPZ) which aims to stimulate growth in the private sector through robust interventions targeted at transformation of Zambian entrepreneurs and enterprises. It provides all competitors with invaluable support and expertise through business planning workshops, coaching and mentoring sessions and many opportunities to network and connect with the wider world of business. In this way, all participants are winners, with the best talents being substantially rewarded for their innovative business ideas and plans.

Private Enterprise Programme Zambia Team Leader Bayo Akindeinde said “the sponsorship will help in creating an enabling environment in which entrepreneurs will be able to conceptualise and bring to life money-making ventures to serve as a source of employment for people throughout Zambia.”

The Competition aims to transform Zambia’s entrepreneurial landscape by inspiring ambitious businessmen and women to raise their game and take their ideas to the next level, in the process creating employment and driving the economy forward. Nyamuka Zambia is also tasked with finding a new generation of business heroes, helping them put into place a game plan to grow their enterprises and tap into new markets that the Zambian economy needs. The company is changing attitudes towards entrepreneurship in Zambia for the better with innovation, growth and diversity as its watch words.
Nyamuka Zambia Business Plan Competition Manager Shalin Jethi said, “having Barclays work with us for the 2016 season of Nyamuka Zambia is exciting. We believe they will add significant value to the competition and their sponsorship will go a long way in helping young entrepreneurs materialise their business ideas.”

Barclays Bank Zambia Managing Director Saviour Chibiya has reiterated the Bank’s support for the private economic sector saying “Barclays Bank is excited to help uplift the next generation of Zambian businessmen and women. As one of the leading Banks on the market in operating income, foreign exchange, transactional business, customer deposits and loans to customers we acknowledge that our success is as a result of the support of the society we operate in. We therefore are delighted that Barclays through its Shared Growth Citizenship agenda is adding value to communities that the Bank operates in and ultimately fueling growth through support of various economic sectors. We will continue to partner with other stakeholders to address challenges that society is facing.”

“With the recent developments in the commodity markets, we are eager to play a constructive role in helping to diversify the Zambian economy by supporting the SMEs such as the ones to benefit from the Nyamuka program. This sponsorship package is among the steps we are taking towards supporting growth in the economy and we are confident that it will yield positive results” he added.

The Nyamuka Business Plan Competition applications ran from 10 March to 29 April 2016. This year’s competition has registered over 2,000 expressions of interest and over 650 applications from entrepreneurial hopefuls who cut across diverse economic sectors.