Investment allows leading Diagnostics company to grow

Investment allows leading Diagnostics company to grow

Ronald Wantanda, founder and director of Human Diagnostics Ltd, one of Ugandans leading Medical Diagnostics companies, started his company from a vision: to build a legacy. A legacy where all people in Uganda get access to basic medical equipment. Something that seemed like a dream for people in underserved communities in Uganda. But, Ronald started to revolutionize the medical diagnostics sector in Uganda by making basic medical diagnostics supplies available to the upcountry regions of Uganda. As a medical diagnostics company, Human Diagnostics deals in the supply of medical laboratory diagnostic equipment, vital for the detection of critical illnesses. They supply to major healthcare facilities, institutions, hospitals and clinics across the country. The company has been steadily growing over the years and searched an investment to facilitate the importation of additional equipment and meet their working capital needs. Therefore, they needed an investment from investors that understood the business and saw the potential of their plan. An injection of money they would not be able to obtain from the normal banking system. At the end of 2017, Ronald closed an investment with two investment funds that agreed to co-invest in the company. The two investment funds know the sector since they are medically oriented, enabling Human Diagnostics to promptly avail the required medical supplies to numerous health facilities all around the...
DEALS, DEALS, DEALS

DEALS, DEALS, DEALS

How come businesses that have been labelled “investment-ready” rarely receive an investment? How come businesses complain they perceive access to capital to be a major hurdle, whilst investors complain there is a lack of high-quality deal-flow? The day before SANKALP in Nairobi various stakeholders came together to discuss these questions. BiD Network is one of the intermediaries seeking to bridge this gap, by working with both (informal) investors and entrepreneurs simultaneously. The gap still remains here, and whilst incubators and accelerators were reflecting on how they themselves could further facilitate the connection to investors, we invited investors to join us for an investor circle to discuss how to improve good quality deal-flow. Not surprisingly, the two frequently named issues passed the revue: 1) Talent gap – there is a strong focus on “the idea,” and whilst this is important for the potential scalability of the company, initially it is more about the management team’s capacity to execute that determines scalability. 2) Financial records gap – frequently multiple books are being kept. Even when businesses have been going through the deal-making process it has happened more than once that in the final stages the investor finds out there is yet another loan they were unaware of. Investors then are forced to discontinue the deal-making process to either prevent over indebtedness or because trust has been lost. It should be mentioned that all investors underlined the importance of a holistic approach. Whilst ranking the gaps, they unanimously mentioned the absence of any of their requirements translates into the business not being considered ready for an investment. The absence of trust, transparency,...
Women in Business finalists from Uganda and Rwanda visiting Holland

Women in Business finalists from Uganda and Rwanda visiting Holland

From 13 until 15 January the two finalists of this year’s Women in Business challenge will be coming to the Netherlands. During these three days the finalists will meet with investors and they will represent their businesses at ‘Bridge the Gap II  Women, Money and Markets’, an event organized by Vive Invest. The finalists that will be visiting are the following: Yellow Star Food Products Ltd (Uganda) Yellow Star was founded in 1997 and registered in 2014, and produces nutritive cassava flour, soy bean flour for children and adults, soy paste and ground nuts. Other products include a mixture of soy, millet flour and soy with maize or rice. The company sources all its inputs from contracted women and farmer groups from the North of Uganda. Women are supported and trained in various ways and cooperatives are founded and made bankable. Yellow Star has sales contracts with the 4 main supermarkets (Shoprite, Nakumat, Quality and Capital) in Uganda and also sells to schools, orphanages, church organisations and individuals. The business currently rents most of the processing facilities and wants to establish its own processing plant as well as a larger facility for storage and packaging. The development of the facility has already started and additional finance of USD 487,037 is needed to complete the building, set up a modern processing plant and to cover initial working capital. Sustainable Health Enterprises (SHE) (Rwanda) SHE is a social for-profit entity in Rwanda that produces affordable menstrual pads while at the same time providing health education and advocacy for girls and women. Currently 18% of the women and girls in Rwanda miss out on over 50 days of school or work due to a lack of...
Finding & Fixing the Gaps in the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Rwanda

Finding & Fixing the Gaps in the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Rwanda

What hampers businesses to thrive in Rwanda? That was the question that led the roundtable organized by BiD Network and Ejo Partners as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week. Entrepreneurs, Business Development Service providers and financiers came together to collaboratively discuss the problems and solutions. Equipped with post-its in different colors, all participants got to indicate their perceived problems and solutions. A recurring theme was the attitude of the entrepreneurs. The problem post-its were filled with “a lack of entrepreneurial spirit,” the solution post-its with “changing the attitude of entrepreneurs.” More specifically, below are 5 problems and 5 solutions as a result of the roundtable.   PROBLEMS The biggest problem is how to get stakeholders to collaborate more. Particularly banks are comfortable in their own space. Roundtables such as this one organized by BiD Network can only go so far. Record keeping remains challenging. Bookkeeping should be a practice incorporated from the very beginning. It aids in forming a strategy and improving access to finance. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs only realize the necessity when they are in need of finance. Entrepreneurs like to be in charge. This is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it is important to know what is going on in your business. On the other hand, it does undermine the ability of experts taking certain activities on. There is a disconnection between the high international product standards and the low purchasing power in Rwanda. To create products that can be exported means increasing production costs. This translates into prices that have a high likelihood of excluding the local market. Bank lending rates are sky high. In...

BiD Network launches market research in Rwanda & Uganda

We all know the obstacles hampering SME growth. They are access to knowledge, access to finance and access to markets. Access to knowledge is a broad term. Hence, the variety of actors providing access to knowledge is large. The GIIN and Open Capital’s recent publication about East Africa sought to make an attempt to map the larger Business Development Services providers. However, the sector is scattered, consisting out of many individual consultants. Which are the organizations specifically designed to provide Business Development Services? How do SMEs that made use of these services rate them? Who pays for these services? These are the questions we are seeking to answer by means of a market research project and we need your help. Are you an SME and have you made use of Business Development Services? We want to hear from you! Please fill in our survey here. Are you an intermediary and have you ever purchased or provided Business Development Services? Please let us know here! Thank you and keep an eye out on the website and blog to stay updated on this market...

Promising entrepreneurs from Kosovo to Holland

Guest post by blogger Stevan van Dijk of www.kosovo-info.com KOSOVO – Two Kosovar companies with a lot of potential to grow, will visit The Netherlands in October this year. Both of the companies are active in the food processing industry and are looking for Dutch investors, customers, partners, and experts to let their business grow. ‘Rizona’ sells both high quality fresh and canned vegetables. This will be an amount of 250 tons of vegetables, in the year 2015. The owner of the company is Bashkim Bytyqi. The other company, ‘Edona’, is specialized in selling sweet pastries like baklava, the famous ‘Turkish’ delicacy. Edona delivers her goods to many big supermarkets, restaurants and hotels. But her product does not stay in Kosovo, as also other European countries are interested. Owner of the company, Fatmire Maliqi, received the title of ‘most successful businesswoman of Kosovo’, in 2014. Owners of both of the companies will visit Amsterdam on the 7th and 8th of October to meet potential partners. If you are interested in the program, and the possibility to meet (one of the) owners, you can send an email to Annemarie van Mossel of BiD Network (annemarie.vanmossel@bidnetwork.org). She has also more information regarding the two promising companies. Interested in more about doing business in...