Start-up capital is not the major challenge of women to start business, the National President, African Women’s Entrepreneurship Program me(AWEP), Mrs Angela Ajala, has said.
Mrs Ajala, who was speaking at the 2019 AWEP Annual Conference in Abuja with theme, ‘Positioning for Funding’, said the conference focused on funding because of the constant complaints from women that they don’t have enough money to start-up or to grow their businesses.
“The idea is to expose them to what is required to make businesses attractive to clients.
“Money is not the first thing that you need in your business but what should come to mind is, are your records well kept? Are you out there in the market? Is your branding visible? Do you have good accounting principles? Have you separated your personal life from your business life so that it is clear for people to see? Are you attractive to investors? Are you attractive to the bank? What are the things you need to have in place to easily attract money?”
She said they have seen in certain places that funds were readily available but lack of information on where and how to access it is a problem and “most times we are not structured to take the money”, adding that what they are doing is to make sure women understand what it takes to access fund to grow their businesses. She urged the National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration (NAFDAC) to support Nigerian women entrepreneur by speeding up registration process for their businesses, adding that a lot of women are still complaining that the time it takes for NAFDAC to answer them in registering their businesses is too long.
The Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs Pauline Tallen, at the conference said the fastest way to change or strengthen any nation’s economy is to empower the womenfolk, adding that women have added much value to the Nigerian economy in diverse ways.
Mrs Tallen, who lauded President Muhammadu Buhari on the closure of the nation’s border said, this has given a lot of women entrepreneurs opportunity to sell their goods in larger quantity and to get contracts worth millions of dollars.
She urged NAFDAC to hasten registration process for women entrepreneurs as that will also help to uplift the standards of living of families.