Access Bank supports women in agribusiness under Womenprenuer Pitch-a-ton season 5

Access Bank Ghana continues to demonstrate leadership in promoting women initiatives under its flagship programme for women, the ‘W’ Initiative.

The bank is extending finance and world-class business training as well as mentorship to women owned businesses in the agriculture value chain, as part of the 2023 Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton competition.

Originally held for all subsidiaries by Access Bank Group, the past two seasons, four and five have been championed in Ghana to enable more participation from across the country.

The top 50 women entrepreneurs have been selected to participate in a business management bootcamp (BMB) to equip them with skills they need to manage and scale-up their businesses. to participate in a Business Management Bootcamp (BMB) to equip them with skills they need to manage and scale-up their businesses.

Speaking on the latest edition of the Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton competition, Executive Director for Retail and Digital Banking at Access Bank Ghana, Pearl Nkrumah said season five offers opportunity to women in agribusinesses to build their capacity in business management and receive financial support for their businesses.

“The training will be organized by the GIZ AgriBiz programme and will cover important topics including strategic planning, digital marketing, market alternatives and growth strategies, business planning, financial management, costing & pricing. These are meant to build their capacity to navigate the business terrain to be profitable.” She also shed light on the prizes for season five.

“The top three finalists will each receive seed capital of GH¢100,000. Other participants will receive consolation prizes including free website development, digital advertisement, and cash prize of GH¢30,000. All top 50 will also receive post business coaching support from January to March 2024. The Managing Director’s special award of GH¢20,000 will go to the most eco-friendly business in the competition.

Pearl thanked partners GIZ and AFC – Agriculture and Finance Consultants GmbH, for believing in Access Bank and partnering with the Bank on the Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton competition for a second time.

Speaking at the orientation ceremony, Zonal Head of Retail Banking, Josephine Eva Arthur, reiterated the Bank’s support for women. She said, “the Mastercard Index report on women entrepreneurs in Africa reveals that Ghana is at the top. However, many businesswomen have issues with sustaining their businesses as many fold up within three to four years of operation. She noted that Access Bank has been proactive in supporting women to change this narrative. “We saw the need to come in to support women CEOs like yourself to build your technical competences and help you to set your business structures to ensure business continuity and growth.  Once we empower women we get to do better as an economy”

On his part, Project Lead for the GIZ AgriBiz Programme, Christoph Pannhausen said the goal of the Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton competition aligns with that of GIZ, as they seek to support small, micro, and medium businesses, especially in the Agribusiness sector. He explained that the BMB was going to equip the women with practical useful business tips that would help them boost their businesses and encouraged the 50 finalists to make the most from the training.

Participants shared their expectations for the bootcamp. “I look forward to being equipped to be able to access information to help me to improve my business operations” – Nuong Faalong (CEO of Beauty 101). “To learn how to manage my business better to scale-up and sustain my business. After day one, I must say this is the most practical and interactive class I have ever attended, and I know by the end of the training I would become a better entrepreneur” – Ellen Ayensuaa Gyapong (CEO of El’s Food Services).

Access Bank has over the years developed a deep understanding of its customers, delivering excellent services and empowering them to achieve more through financial inclusion.

The ‘W’ initiative is a one-stop-shop for all Access Bank’s women empowerment offerings. It seeks to inspire, connect, and empower women through initiatives such as the Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton competition, which has trained and given grants to over 300 women since its inception in 2019.