Facej sugu: showing the made in Mali to the general public

Posted on 11.18.2022 at 13:04 by Fatoumata Maguiraga

The Facej sugu is preparing its second edition which will be held from 24 to 27 November 2022 in Bamako. Established in 2019, the Youth Business Creation Support Fund (Facej) has supported more than a thousand businesses. His aim now is to consolidate them so that they serve as reference points for youth entrepreneurship.

The objective of the Youth Business Creation Support Fund, launched in 2019, was to finance 1,652 businesses in the Bamako district, Koulikoro, Mopti, Timbuktu, Ségou, Sikasso and Kita regions, explains Chloé Rimmann, Gender, Advocacy and Head of Communications. The facility currently has three main branches. One for business creation for young people between 18 and 30 and 35 for women, one for growing businesses and one just started with the aim of financing green businesses.

Facej works with “facilitator” partners. These are support structures, NGOs, incubation centres, which number around sixty. They are the ones who identify young people and support them in developing a business plan. It is also about supporting them in obtaining a bank loan. Bank loans at 8% interest rate with four partners (BNDA, COFINA, CORIS, ORABANK) and the Private Sector Guarantee Fund it supports. When young people get bank loans, they are supported between 12 months for growing companies and 18 months for startups to help them consolidate their business. The latter also benefit from training in business management.

They are in different fields except general trade. The project must represent an added value, such as agribusiness, digital, fashion, services, in particular.

Recurring constraints

One of the constraints of young entrepreneurs remains the ecosystem itself, which is not “in favor of formal entrepreneurship”, notes our interlocutor. However, one of the conditions for Facej support is this formalization. Furthermore, access to information also remains difficult.

Young entrepreneurs often find it difficult to know how to orient themselves on the choice of corporate or even tax typology. To this must be added the various crises that Mali is going through. But many of them are “very resilient”.

In addition to age, which remains a determining factor, young people must have a minimum of training. A CAP or whatever, not necessarily a high school diploma. The ultimate goal is to choose “young people who really have an entrepreneurial spirit, are serious and understand that a bank loan must be repaid”, explains the communication officer.

To celebrate these already created companies, Facej has started Facej Sugu which is holding its second edition this year with more than 1,500 companies.

The first edition gave young people the opportunity to gain visibility, Facej intends to continue this initiative to further promote these companies and magnify the made in Mali. Facej sugu also allows you to highlight companies from other regions, not just Bamako.

It is also a learning space where young people will connect with experienced entrepreneurs and have the opportunity to learn how to best expound and improve business strategies.

This year the number of exhibitors has been doubled and brought to 200, of which around one hundred come from Bamako. A large panel on entrepreneurship will be organized for the participants, with Mossadeck Bally, (the president of the CNPM), an entrepreneur from Niger, from Burkina Faso and an influential entrepreneur from the Ivory Coast.

With a goal “almost achieved”, the Facej foresees over 1,600 companies supported, which will need to be “consolidated and supported”.

The field that currently interests the structure is that of ecology. It’s about making existing businesses greener and encouraging new ones to spring up. “If we can create companies that will participate in addressing the challenges of global warming, the consequences of which Mali is already suffering; this can be positive, especially in the field of agriculture”, concludes Ms Rismann.

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