IFC and H&C Business Technologies Launch SME Toolkit in Benin and Senegal to Provide Small Businesses with Access to Business Information and Training
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has partnered with H&C Business Technologies, a leading business service provider in West Africa, to launch a free Web site and toolkit that will provide better access to information and training for small businesses in Benin and Senegal.
The SME Toolkit, to be launched in the two countries during the first half of 2008, will offer a range of interactive content to support small business owners and managers in seven core business areas: accounting and finance, business planning, human resources, legal and insurance, marketing and sales, operations, and information technology. Through the toolkit, small businesses will be able to access free learning resources and receive help on implementing sustainable business practices. They will also be able to partner with local support providers and go global by accessing detailed market, investment, and trade information on over 64 countries with the strongest export potential.
Hermann Cakpo, Chief Executive Officer, H&C Business Technologies, said, “The launch of the SME Toolkit in Benin and Senegal will help promote sustainable private sector investment by enabling small and medium enterprises to access critical business skills and information resources.”
Lizabeth Bronder, IFC SME Toolkit Manager, said, “We are delighted to sign this agreement with H&C business Technologies and to add Benin and Senegal to our network of the African SME Toolkit sites. Having partners who can provide country-specific content, local marketing, and bundled technology services will make the toolkit more relevant for small business clients and entrepreneurs.”
IFC distributes the SME Toolkit in a number of countries through partnerships with local organizations that can translate the product into local languages and offer locally relevant content in areas such as business regulations, sources of financing, and local business directories, as well as support the distribution of the local versions to SMEs in their markets.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing private sector investment, mobilizing private capital in local and international financial markets, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. IFC’s vision is that poor people have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY07, IFC committed $8.2 billion and mobilized an additional $3.9 billion through loan participations and structured finance for 299 investments in 69 developing countries. IFC also provided advisory services in 97 countries. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
About H&C Business Technologies
Founded in 2003, H&C Business Technologies is a West Africa-based business services provider. The company promotes better management practices in West African countries by developing and providing business tools and solutions to start-up and growing small and medium enterprises. Its products and services range from software, training, and surveys, to Web development and promotion services. The company serves about 1,500 small businesses and has offices in Dakar, Senegal, and Cotonou, Benin. For more information, visit http://impulsiondespme.com/produit.php.
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