Citing what it says have been “positive results and evident business growth and success among participants, Republic Bank Guyana Ltd has announced that it will further extend its support for EMPRETEC’s Venture Out For Women 2013 programme, by facilitating a total of $1 million in collateral-free loan prizes to the three participants in this year’s programme with the best business proposals. EMPRETEC’s Venture Out programme which has benefited from Republic Bank sponsorship since 2010 is credited with embracing a two-pronged approach to empowering women engaged in small business ventures, the first component being providing participants with practical training in the effective management of businesses and the second being imbuing participants in the programme with a sense of self-confidence by promoting what ERMPRETEC has described as “entrepreneurial awareness and determination.”
Apart from removing the requirement of collateral security from the winners of the loan prizes, Republic Bank says that the loans will attract lower rates of interest. Local commercial banks have been seeking to identify themselves with initiatives that support small business development in Guyana and in a release issued late last year Republic Bank describes itself and EMPRETEC as “partners” in Venture Out, having recognized the need for initiatives of this nature. The bank says that “both global research and local experiences reveal that the needs of women entrepreneurs differ significantly from that of men.” It says the programme “allows for the education, motivation, empowerment and networking among groups of women with a view to creating and developing confident and successful business persons.”
Venture Out has secured recognition among initiatives undertaken to enhance the growth of the small business sector particularly given its focus on rural and interior women and communities and Republic Bank says that its support for Venture underscores its social investment objective of building stronger communities.