Agencies support entrepreneurs to rise to the business challenge
LUSAKA, ZAMBIA – Monday 6 February 2017 – the Nyamuka Zambia business plan competition is delighted to announce the signing of an agreement to continue its partnership with the Zambia Development Agency (ZDA). By continuing to work closely together, ZDA and Nyamuka Zambia aim to encourage even more entrepreneurs to turn their business dreams into reality as well as promoting and facilitating investment, trade and competitiveness of businesses in Zambia.
The two organisations are entering the second year of their formal partnership through which entrepreneurs will have access to ZDA’s Information Resource Centre and One-Stop Shop on Cairo Road, Lusaka. ZDA’s downtown venue will be hosting an application centre for the 3rd season of the Nyamuka Zambia business plan competition which will start accepting applications on 7 March 2017.
The agreement to formalise this arrangement was signed by the Deputy Team Leader of the Private Enterprise Programme Zambia (of which Nyamuka Zambia is a component), Ms Donia Benmiloud, and Mr Mukula Makasa, ZDA’s Director of Enterprise.
“We are proud and pleased to be continuing our partnership with ZDA which will promote and support aspiring Zambian entrepreneurs,” commented PEPZ’s Donia Benmiloud. “ZDA is playing an important role in the development of the private sector in Zambia and is a key player in the successful implementation of the Government’s strategy for supporting the growth of small and medium sized businesses”, she added.
Namaya Mbikusita-Lewanika, manager of Nyamuka Zambia, stated that the ZDA Information Resource Centre was a very successful location for an application advice centre for the business plan competition in 2016. “It helped us broaden the pool of entrepreneurs who applied for the competition as well as helping aspiring entrepreneurs to research market opportunities and formalise their businesses using the resources of ZDA. We are looking forward to even greater success when the new season of the competition opens shortly.”
Speaking on behalf of the ZDA, Mr Makasa pointed out the critical role that entrepreneurs and SMEs are playing in the diversification of the Zambian economy. “We are delighted to be working in close partnership with the Nyamuka Zambia team. Hosting a Nyamuka Zambia application advice centre and working with the business plan competition throughout the season allows us to not only to support this important initiative which is helping entrepreneurs to develop successful businesses but it also gives us a platform for demonstrating the facilities and services that ZDA offers entrepreneurs”, he stated.
The application period for the 2017 season opens at midday on 7 March and the last day for submission is 26 April at 17:00.
In 2016 Nyamuka Zambia received 658 applications for the competition, over 30% from women. The 20 finalists all walked away with a share in a prize fund of more than K2,000,000, with the top prize winner, Musanshi Chiluba, receiving K250,000 to invest in her button mushroom business.