Western Region’s biggest innovation hub, Innovation Community of Developers Environment (ICODE) has trained over one hundred micro businesses to equip them with the requisite skills to improve their operations while they increase their profit margins.
With their focus on technology, business incubation and training, ICODE is poised to change the narrative of the contributions made by innovation hub in building up startups and helping sustain existing businesses as it empowers the youth in different walks of life.
The training, dubbed “Micro Business Games” which is ongoing with support from GIZ, an agency of the German foreign ministry and the “Sparkassen Stiftung fur de International Kooperation” (Savings Bank Foundation) also from Germany are expected to benefit about 500 businesses in the Western Region of Ghana.
The training basically focuses on financial literacy, basic economic background, analysis of events used in the simulation, planning income and cost (budgeting), the magic triangle of saving, saving versus loan, the economic impact of saving and the role of financial institution in making better decisions.
As part of the training, getting to know your numbers in theory and practice as business are essential so participants are divided into four groups with each group assuming leadership of a business simulation process. They take business decisions and gain insight into the internal and external factors that influence the performance of their businesses and receive feedback and reflect on the progress within the simulation.
The founder and CEO of ICODE, Prince Bonney disclosed that ICODE trains business men and women in Fashion, Agric, E-commerce and General B-to-B operations in addition to a host of other IT trainings. “But we are specialized in training businesses that use IT as a tool to power their businesses” he added.
According to him, ICODE has trained about 180 Startups in the Western Region between May to July 2019 alone of which GIZ and the Savings Bank Foundation has been of immense support to ICODE and beneficiaries in many endeavors.
“We realized that many people do their business without proper record keeping and this makes it difficult for them to receive funding from financial institutions like the banks to expand when the need arises. Knowing too well that banks rely heavily on income statements and financial accounting books to provide support, how then does your business get support. The training we do will help know the basic book keeping as well as positioning them to be able to balance their books properly as well as forecasting and even managing their supplies.”
Mr. Bonney says every batch of trainees receives mentorship by other businesses in the same space for a period to help them get hands on practice away from the theories thought.
“One of our main goal of the training program is actually to empower the private business person to create jobs for the community. Therefore, if a single entrepreneur is making more money there is a guarantee that he or she might employ someone else to expand the business. We want to encourage young entrepreneurs in Sekondi-Takoradi and the Western Region at large to create more businesses.”
Takoradi, he said can also experience the module seen in Accra and Kumasi where those places have become the center of attraction for business support and “ICODE will be offering this free training support to all young entrepreneurs and other organizations operating in Takoradi and its environs and the western region, adding that ICODE will soon be opening a branch in Tarkwa.
Filed By: Benjamin Bray