Bank of Kigali (BK) Thursday awarded six enterprises Rwf25 million worth of loans under its BK Urumuri initiative, a programme through which the bank gives interest free funding to high potential projects.
The six winners were among the 13 finalists that had pitched their business ideas to the bank just a week.
They were selected after undergoing a six-month accelerator programme which equipped them with skills in finance, operations and sales.
The programme was conducted by Inkomoko Entrepreneur Development.
Diane Karusisi, the Bank’s Chief Executive Officer, described the winning entrepreneurs as future big customers of the bank.
“We believe these [entrepreneurs] will be our big customers in the next ten years. We also believe we have a responsibility of promoting the local entrepreneurship ecosystem,” she remarked.
The loans they secured have varying maturity periods.
Nathalie Niyonzima, the Managing Director of Inkomoko Entrepreneur Development, told The New Times that the entrepreneurs have potential to pay back the loans.
“This is the second edition of BK Urumuri. We have seen that the past entrepreneurs are paying well their loans. So we have no doubt that even these winners will still fulfil their obligations of paying back their loans,” she noted.
Here is a list of the winners
House of Tayo
Enterprise owner: Matthew Rugamba
House of Tayo offers premium quality, unique, tailor-made African fashion for men. Products range from bow ties, pocket squares, ties, scarfs, shirts and tailor-made suits.
House of Tayo has been in operations for five years in Kigali, with two locations. The prime store is located in Gacuriro and the second store recently opened last month at Camp Kigali. Rugamba secured Rwf5 million.
Enterprise owner: Josue Uwizeye
Josh Innovation was created and registered in 2017. Josue’s vision as an entrepreneur is to change the nation by creating necessary cooking products for middle and lower income segments.
Josh innovation uses locally sourced raw materials that are environmental friendly to produce different types of cookers and pellets. The entrepreneur secured Rwf4 million.
Enterprise owner: Marie Ange Mukagahima
Zima enterprise originally known as Itetero Gahima enterprise is a pastries company that started last year. They make different products from pumpkin such as roasted pumpkin seeds and cookies, bread and cake from pumpkin flour. They argue that pumpkins are rich in dietary fibres, Vitamin A and Vitamin C and yet neglected.
Mukagahima told this paper that the loan will help them expand the operations particularly through purchasing machinery that will make it possible to supply their products to more markets. Her enterprise received Rwf2 million.
Enterprise owner: Alexandre Nshimiyimana
Sanit Wing Ltd was founded in 2015 and is based in Musanze district in the Northern Province. The company makes soaps, oil, vaseline and lotions out of avocado, aloe vera and coconut. Nshimiyimana received a dummy cheque of Rwf5 million.
Enteprise owner: Dominique Alonga
ImagineWe Publishers is an organization that started in 2015 with the passion to change the reading culture among children and youth in Rwanda. In collaboration with young Rwandan authors they write books for young children and adults.
ImagineWe Publishers has eight books on the market so far; two for adults and six for children. They also secured Rwf5 million.
Sonia Mugabo Showroom
Enterprise owner: Sonia Mugabo
Sonia Mugabo Showroom is a clothing store with an “SM” eponymous fashion brand that was founded in 2014. The company has offices in Kigali where it employs local artisans to create high quality clothing based on global trends, while having an inspiration edge that is purely African. Mugabo got Rwf4 million.