Old Mutual targets small businesses for empowerment

Tujoromajo Kasuto

The Old Mutual Sustainable, Economic, and Empowerment Drive (OM SEED) initiative, launched in collaboration with Launch Namibia, the Financial Literacy Initiative (FLI), and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Accelerator Lab, aims to empower 180 entrepreneurs with N$85 000.

Old Mutual Foundation manager of communications Mufaro Nesongano states OM SEED is an initiative that they have endorsed for the next three years, beginning this year. Every year, they will target the grassroots market in three randomly selected towns across the 14 regions.

‘’This year we have specifically selected Keetmanshoop, Oshakati and Windhoek, as these towns are strategically located to impact and create value within the deep-seated communities,’’ he said.

Ashante Manetti, acting marketing and communications executive continued by highlighting that ‘’by working alongside the Financial Literacy Initiative, a national platform to enhance financial education and Launch Namibia, who identify as a SME market player, this shows our commitment of partnering with organizations who are doing exceptional work for the Namibian SMME sector.’’

Old Mutual Namibia and its partners hope to empower 180 small businesses by providing training in financial sustainability, business ethics, and sustainable business practices to 60 selected applicants per town.

Twenty of these will be chosen to pitch to a panel of three judges, and three winners will be chosen per town to receive N$85 000 to help them grow their businesses.

Applications will open on 5 July and close on 22 July 2022, with application forms available at Old Mutual branches in Keetmanshoop, Oshakati, and Windhoek.

Windhoek participants will be able to participate in OM SEED on August 3 and 4, Keetmanshoop participants will be able to participate on August 10 and 11, and Oshakati participants will participate on August 17 and 18.

“Through the OM SEED we want to empower our entrepreneurs to take charge of their future, to be able to cultivate and grow their business ideas and be able to expand their business. Through training, mentoring, leadership and guidance, this initiative can empower our local entrepreneurs to thrive and one day empower others to follow suit”, concluded Nesongano.

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