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Business & Finance | Nov 13, 2004

BusyInternet receives World Bank grant for incubator programme

GNA

Accra, Nov. 13, GNA - BusyInternet Ghana Limited, a private Information and Communication Technology (ICT) centre, has received a grant of 100,000 dollars from the World Bank- administered Information for Development (InfoDev) Programme to expand its ''business incubation portfolio'' in Accra.

Under the incubator programme, BusyInternet would provide subsidized and ICT business advisory and training services with a view to stimulating entrepreneurship, innovation and improved productivity to some companies.

Ms Estelle Akofio-Sowah, Managing Director of BusyInternet, told who announced this at a press briefing in Accra on Friday, said the total grant sum for the 18-month period was 300,000 dollars and it would be released in three instalments.

She said applicants would have access to an infrastructure of intelligence and wired office space, highly subsidized technical and advisory services, access to a community of like-minded entrepreneurs and should be able to grow within 18 months.

Services to be offered under the programme would include assisting applicant companies to integrate ICT into every aspect of management to build capacity and competitiveness.

Established in Ghana in 2001, BusyInternet is the largest privately owned ICT centre in Africa with a mission to promote and provide commercial services for social and economic development.

Ms Akofio-Sowah said the programme is aimed at building institutional capacity and create a knowledge database that would expose SME start-ups to technical resources, contracts and other resources. In addition "incubates" would enter a continuous consultative programme, pairing up with local businesses that provide a large range of financial, technical, management and marketing support services. Selected companies must meet clear performance criteria and would be assessed by their mentors and/or Programme Managers.

InfoDev Programme is a consortium of public bilateral and multilateral development agencies, which works in close cooperation with partners from civil society and the private sector, assisted by an expert secretariat housed at the World Bank.

It is aimed at helping developing countries and their development partners use ICT broadly and effectively as tools of poverty reduction, sustainable economic growth, and empowerment of individuals and communities.

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