Leadership Series

ConsumerCentriX and Stanbic Bank Uganda Limited to Launch Compassionate Leadership Series on 4th November 2021

In partnership with ConsumerCentriX, Stanbic Bank is pleased to have the opportunity to introduce the Compassionate Leadership Public Engagement Series.

The Series will consist of three webinars featuring compassionate leaders and technical persons in our community, that will help us understand how they have effectively led their organizations and provide practical tools in overcoming the challenges brought by the pandemic.

The inaugural conversation, Leading with Heart – “adapting to a new normal in a tough business environment”, will be launched on 4th November 2021 at 2 pm and will be moderated by Maurice Mugisha, with Anne Juuko, Stanbic Bank CE, Wim Vanhelleputte, Chief Executive MTN (U) LTD, and Thadeus Musoke Nagenda, Ag. Chairman KACITA, as panellists.

Don’t miss the opportunity to participate!

To register for the webinar, visit: Webinar Registration


KCB Bank Rwanda

The SME Response Clinic Partners with KCB Bank

The SME Response Clinic Partners with KCB Bank  

A version of this article was originally posted on the SME Response Clinic

The SME Response Clinic has partnered with KCB Bank Rwanda as part of our ongoing efforts to bring entrepreneurs even closer to financial institutions that offer access to finance and non-financial services to meet business needs through COVID-19 and beyond.  

Through this partnership, entrepreneurs will have access to timely information on KCB Bank’s financial products as well as non-financial services such as KCB Bank’s Biashara Club, which features preferential offerings, trainings, business workshops, and networking opportunities. Through the partnership, SME Response Clinic visitors will also have a direct line to the institution at +250788140000. 

We are excited about the  opportunities this partnership can create for your businesses, and we look forward to providing you with regular updates on KCB Bank Rwanda’s products and services! 


Meet the Winners and Nominees of the SME Response Clinic Awards

Celebrating the SME Response Clinic Awards


Read the Terms and Conditions

We are proud to feature the 30 businesses shortlisted for the SME Response Clinic Business Awards through the Twiteze Imbere campaign, which celebrated the role small businesses play in the country’s journey to recovery following COVID-19. We received around 1,200 nominations from across the country in three categories: established businesses, women-owned businesses, and startup/innovative businesses. Congratulations to the businesses that were shortlisted and we wish them the best in their growth!

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE WINNERS

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE RUNNERS UP


SME Response Clinic Business Awards

Winners of SME Response Clinic Business Awards Announced

Press Release - For Immediate Release

Kigali, Rwanda - 30 April 2021

Access to Finance Rwanda, ConsumerCentriX, and Partners Announce Winners of SME Response Clinic Business Awards 

  • Three diverse Rwandan businesses win inaugural SME Response Clinic Business Awards with Rwf 1,000,000 prize 
  • Winners selected from 1,200 nominations across the country 
  • Five runners-up awarded 6-month business skills course 

Access to Finance Rwanda and ConsumerCentriX today announced the winners of the inaugural SME Response Clinic Business Awards following the Twiteze Imbere campaign to recognise the role of small businesses in Rwanda’s road to recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Through the campaign, the general public nominated their favourite small businesses, giving their nominees the chance to win an SME Response Clinic Business Award. The competition featured three categories: women-owned businesses, start-up or innovative businesses, and established businesses. Rwandans made online nominations via the SME Response Clinic website and over the phone. 

The three winning small businesses and five runners-up were selected from among 30 shortlisted companies after careful and thorough deliberation. Access to Finance Rwanda and ConsumerCentriX are pleased to announce that the winners and runners-up are: 

  • Women-owned business category: 
    1. Winner: Kurema Kureba Kwiga, a public-arts social enterprise located in Kigali 
    2. Runner-up: Kicirwanda, an art and craft store based in Kigali 
  • Startup/Innovative business category: 
    1. Winner: HADI Constructions, a construction consulting firm based in Nyagatare District 
    2. Runners-up: Bhiku Bakery from Rwamagana District and Johnson’s Bakery from Kicukiro District 
  • Established business category: 
    1. Winner: Umucyo Company, a liquid soap manufacturer based in Kirehe District 
    2. Runners-up: Blessed Garden, a female-owned guest house based in Kayonza District, and Crema, a coffee shop located in Musanze District 

The awards come as a result of the SME Response Clinic campaign ‘Twiteze Imbere’ (Let’s Move Forward Together), which celebrated the resilience of small businesses and recognised their contribution to Rwanda’s economic recovery. The SME Response Clinic is a platform developed by Access to Finance Rwanda and ConsumerCentriX in collaboration with the Private Sector Federation, the Association of Microfinance Institutions in Rwanda, African Management Institute, New Faces New Voices Rwanda, and Rwanda Bankers’ Association. 

“Congratulations to the winners and runners-up of the SME Response Clinic Business Awards. In just a few weeks, we received 1,200 nominations from across the country. We were pleased to see great diversity among the nominated small businesses, enthusiasm from their customers, and the impact they are having in their communities on our journey of COVID-19 recovery,” said Jean Bosco Iyacu, Country Director, Access to Finance Rwanda. 

“We are grateful to everyone who took part in the Twiteze Imbere campaign, partner institutions as well as media partners who helped us spread the word. It’s rewarding to see the SME Response Clinic reaching small businesses in every corner of this country and we will continue to support them in these difficult times and beyond,” he added. 

“I am honoured and excited to be one of the winners of the SME Response Clinic Business Awards. This award recognises the important role of the creative industry in the economy and the prize money will support my business to grow. Thank you to the SME Response Clinic and its partners for organising this campaign and for looking out for small businesses,” said Judith Kaine, Director of Kurema Kureba Kwiga, one of the winning businesses. 

The winner in each category receives a cash prize of Rwf 1,000,000 to invest in their business as well as expert advisory services. Runners-up will be sponsored to participate in the African Management Institute‘s Survive to Thrive programme where they will learn how to navigate business challenges and network with other entrepreneurs in Rwanda and across Africa. 

About the SME Response Clinic 

In May 2020, Access to Finance Rwanda (AFR) partnered with ConsumerCentriX to launch the SME Response Clinic – a platform that supports entrepreneurs in Rwanda struggling in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. The SME Response Clinic provides access to training, industry insights, and financial management advice to entrepreneurs in Rwanda struggling to adjust to the economic realities of COVID-19. Access the platform at smeresponse.clinic 

About Access to Finance Rwanda 

AFR began its operations in 2010 with the core objective of stimulating the development of the financial sector in Rwanda. AFR’s intention is to remove the systemic barriers that hinder access to financial services by putting low-income people particularly the rural poor and women at the centre of its interventions. AFR supports the development and provision of financial services including savings, credit, insurance, payments, and remittances. Learn more at afr.rw. 

About ConsumerCentriX 

ConsumerCentriX is a strategy consulting firm that works with financial service providers and policymakers on translating consumer insights into market strategies and policies to reach the un/underserved. Our mission is to develop scalable solutions that are based on deep insights into the lives, needs, and constraints of un/underserved people in emerging markets to improve their livelihoods and create opportunities for economic growth. 

Media Contact 

For any enquiries, write to Nadege Nzeyimana, AFR Communications Consultant, at nadege@afr.rw. 


Rwanda’s COVID-19 Recovery

SME Response Clinic Launches Campaign to Recognise the Role of Small Businesses in Rwanda’s COVID-19 Recovery

Press Release - For Immediate Release

Kigali, Rwanda - 18 March 2021

SME Response Clinic Launches Campaign to Recognise the Role of Small Businesses in Rwanda’s COVID-19 Recovery

A version of this Press Release was originally posted on the SME Response Clinic

The SME Response Clinic, a platform powered by Access to Finance Rwanda and ConsumerCentriX in collaboration with the Private Sector Federation, the Association of Microfinance Institutions in Rwanda, African Management Institute, New Faces New Voices Rwanda, and Rwanda Bankers’ Association, has today launched a campaign to recognise and celebrate the role of small businesses in Rwanda’s road to recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The SME Response Clinic is a platform launched in 2020 to support small and medium-sized enterprises to overcome challenges brought about by COVID-19 through resources and learning opportunities.

The three-week campaign is called ‘Twiteze Imbere’ (Let’s Move Forward Together) and will share stories of small business resilience, encourage entrepreneurs and business owners to utilise SME Response Clinic resources, and celebrate exceptional businesses through the inaugural SME Response Clinic Business Awards.

Over the course of the campaign, the general public and other business owners will be invited to nominate their favourite small businesses for a SME Response Clinic Business Award. Nominations are open in the categories of women-owned businesses, start-up or innovative businesses, and established businesses. The winner in each category will receive a cash prize of one million Rwandan francs to invest in their business as well as expert advisory services. Nominations are open from 18 March until 2 April 2021. Selected runners-up will be sponsored to participate in the African Management Institute’s Survive to Thrive programme. Through this programme, business owners will be equipped with the skills, tools, and strategies to navigate challenges and thrive in difficult times, and network with other entrepreneurs in Rwanda and across Africa.

“Small businesses are the backbone of Rwanda’s economy and employ the vast majority of people across the country. The ‘Twiteze Imbere’ campaign celebrates this and recognises their contribution to Rwanda’s recovery from the pandemic. I encourage all Rwandans to nominate their favourite small business for the SME Response Clinic Business Awards as a great way to show support for local business and the role they play in our day-to-day lives,” said Jean Bosco Iyacu, Country Director, Access to Finance Rwanda.

“We’re delighted to launch this campaign to celebrate the tremendous resilience of entrepreneurs in Rwanda. The SME Response Clinic Business Awards are one way we hope to honor and further support the small businesses that have been pillars of the communities during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Anna Gincherman, Partner, ConsumerCentriX.

Learn more about the campaign and nominate your favourite small business at www.smeresponse.clinic/awards or by calling 0781024420.

About the SME Response Clinic

In May 2020, Access to Finance Rwanda (AFR) partnered with ConsumerCentriX to launch the SME Response Clinic – a platform that supports entrepreneurs in Rwanda struggling in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. The SME Response Clinic provides access to training, industry insights, and financial management advice to entrepreneurs in Rwanda struggling to adjust to the economic realities of COVID-19. Access the platform at smeresponse.clinic

About Access to Finance Rwanda

AFR began its operations in 2010 with the core objective of stimulating the development of the financial sector in Rwanda. AFR’s intention is to remove the systemic barriers that hinder access to financial services by putting low-income people particularly the rural poor and women at the centre of its interventions. AFR supports the development and provision of financial services including savings, credit, insurance, payments, and remittances. Learn more at afr.rw.

Media Contact

For any enquiries or more information, write to musa.kacheche@consumercentrix.ch or reach out to Emile Ndayambaje, AFR Communications Manager, at emile@afr.rw.


Supporting SMEs in Uganda -SME support Uganda- COVID-19 Business Info Hub launch

Stanbic Uganda in partnership with ConsumerCentriX launch the COVID-19 Business Information Hub

“ConsumerCentriX is honored to continue working with Stanbic Bank on further strengthening its small and medium enterprise proposition to address these challenging times. Being relevant, providing support promptly can make the difference for enterprises today,”

-ANNA GINCHERMAN,PARTNER AT CONSUMERCENTRIX.

To provide the much-needed information and solutions for Ugandan entrepreneurs struggling with the financial consequences of the pandemic, Stanbic Bank has partnered with ConsumerCentriX on the Covid-19 Business Info Hub.

This website will provide entrepreneurs advice on financial management to overcome economic slowdown and insights into new developments across industries. Through a partnership with the African Management Institute (AMI), the Covid-19 Business Info Hub will promote informative virtual training sessions and webinars to help entrepreneurs navigate these challenging new circumstances.

Employing over 2.5 million people, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are the key driver of growth for Uganda’s economy. However, as the COVID 19 pandemic unfolds, the SME sector faces reduced business activity and financial security as a result of disruptions to the supply chain, travel restrictions, and changing work environments.

Over the last few months, Stanbic Bank has already introduced a range of innovative products and services to support entrepreneurs with overcoming these challenges. For example, to address reduced revenues and cash flow, clients can now access an unsecured overdraft facility within 24 hours based on the performance of their banking history. To reduce disruptions in the supply chain, the bank has partnered with Zhejiang International Trading Supply Chain Co Ltd to support enterprise clients importing from China.

The Covid-19 Business Info Hub will become a centralized platform for Stanbic to communicate these responsive efforts with enterprise clients in Uganda. However, the vision of the site is to become a trusted resource for all entrepreneurs in Uganda, looking for industry insights and relevant virtual training sessions.

“We are aware of various the challenges businesses are facing especially during this time, and we are committed to unlocking new solutions to enable business continuity. Among the key initiatives, Stanbic has put in place to support businesses is the loan repayment holidays, as a measure to protect clients from adverse economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. We will also continue to be at the forefront of delivering wholesome solutions to entrepreneurs directly through strategic alliances and partnerships to keep them thriving during and post the pandemic,” said  Grace Muliisa, Stanbic Uganda’s Head of Personal and Business Banking

As the implementing partner, ConsumerCentriX is well-positioned to support Stanbic Bank’s on this critical endeavor. ConsumerCentriX is an international strategy consulting firm that works with financial service providers and policymakers on translating consumer insights into market strategies and policies to reach the un/undeserved. The firm has extensive experience supporting SME development in East Africa through financial and non-financial services.

“ConsumerCentriX is honored to continue working with Stanbic Bank on further strengthening its small and medium enterprise proposition to address these challenging times. Being relevant, providing support promptly can make the difference for enterprises today,” said Anna Gincherman, Partner at ConsumerCentriX.


Introducing the SME Response, access to finance for refugees Clinic

Introducing the SME Response Clinic

The Private Sector Federation, Access to Finance Rwanda and ConsumerCentriX in a Joint Covid-19 Response Partnership for Support to Rwanda’s Medium, Small and Micro Enterprises.

READ THE OFFICAL STATEMENT TO THE PRESS

Kigali – 5th May 2020: To support entrepreneurs in Rwanda struggling to adjust to the economic realities of Covid-19, the Rwanda Private Sector Federation has partnered with Access to Finance Rwanda (AFR) and ConsumerCentriX on the SME Response Clinic. This digital platform will translate new policies and financial advice using a clear and straightforward language in both English and Kinyarwanda.

With 148,092 MSMEs in Rwanda representing 99.7 percent of the businesses according to the Integrated Business Enterprise Survey (2017) by the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda (NISR), this sector plays a pivotal role in the country’s socio-economic development.

However, getting access to the right information, training, and finance is no easy feat. Even before the crisis, a number of studies, including ConsumerCentriX’s research in May 2019 and Private Sector Federation’s Business and Climate Survey April 2019 respectively indicate MSME owners face several critical challenges even at the time of economic growth and stability.

The consequences of COVID-19 pandemic further exacerbate challenges faced by MSMEs by significantly reducing their business activities and financial security. The Rwandan government and financial sector have taken several significant measures to support MSMEs during this challenging period.  To ensure that these important measures are communicated to MSMEs in an accessible and timely manner,  the Private Sector Federation in partnership with Access to Finance Rwanda and ConsumerCentriX developed the SME Response Clinic, a digital platform that translates relevant policies and financial advice to the SMEs.

For high quality and relevant content, interviews will be regularly conducted with financial service providers, industry experts, policymakers, and MSMEs. All information will be centralized on the SME Response Clinic website and promoted through SMS, social media campaigns, and different media channels.

“Being the catalyst of a deeper and inclusive financial sector in Rwanda, Access to Finance Rwanda sees the MSME Response Clinic as a key tool in addressing information asymmetry between policymakers, Financial Services Providers and the MSMEs. It also provides an opportunity to understand the real needs of SMEs so as to be able to effectively support them during this unprecedented crisis of Covid-19” said Waringa Kibe, AFR Country Director.

Ms. Anna Gincherman, Partner of ConsumerCentriX believes that if well implemented, the new partnership will yield positive results for the Country’s private sector. “As the leading implementing agency for this project, ConsumerCentriX is well-positioned to accomplish the project objectives due to its extensive background in SME development in Sub-Saharan Africa, including Rwanda, its expertise in working with financial service providers and regulators, and its in-house capacity to manage digital communication,” she added.

Meanwhile, The Private Sector Federation Chief Executive officer Mr. Stephen Ruzibiza commended the new partnership adding that it has come at the right time when MSMEs need strong recovery approaches in terms of various aspects including to the right information and access to finance.

“We welcome this partnership as the SME Response Clinic will provide and collect needed information that will enable key stakeholders to support the resilience of the MSME Sector in this period of Covid-19, ” said Mr. Ruzibiza.

Through a partnership with the African Management Institute (AMI), the SME Response Clinic will be promoting a series of webinars and virtual programs to help entrepreneurs adjust to new realities and ensure resiliency for the future.

Visit the SME Response Clinic

CLICK HERE

For more information, please contact.

Eric Kabera
Head of Communications & Marketing
PSF
Email: erick@psf.org.rw
Phone: +250784113224
Emile Ndayambaje
Communications & Market Development Manager
Access to Finance Rwanda
Email:emile@afr.rw
Phone: + 250 788 270 426
Ana Singh
Communication & Media Specialist
ConsumerCentriX
Email: ana.singh@consumercentrix.ch
Phone: +1 (917) 806-9108