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Empowering Entrepreneurs: GCIC Cohort 8 Receive Over CAD 500,000 Grant Upon Graduation

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Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) play a significant role in Ghana’s economy with over 90% of business enterprises in 2019 being SMEs. Against the backdrop of a growing global demand for environmentally sustainable products and services, green entrepreneurs are uniquely positioned to drive efforts towards climate mitigation and adaptation.

The Ghana Climate Innovation Centre (GCIC), with funding from Global Affairs Canada has been instrumental in enabling the scaling of green businesses in Ghana. With a commitment to support at least 240 entrepreneurs, Global Affairs Canada’s support represents a significant investment in the country’s sustainable development and economic growth.

Since June 2016, GCIC has incubated over 170 businesses, fostering the development of innovative solutions to address climate change. These enterprises have collectively mitigated nearly 600,000 metric tons of carbon emissions, equivalent to the emissions of over 340,000 Ghanaians. They’ve also created over 2000 jobs in total employment, a significant achievement in the wake of the just ended May Day, a day that celebrates the hard work of employees globally.

On April 15th, 2024, GCIC welcomed cohort 9 into its incubator while bidding farewell to 26 businesses from cohort 8. The latest cohort comprises 14 male-led and 12 female-led businesses, reflecting a diverse entrepreneurial selection.

Shauna Flanagan, First Secretary at Global Affairs Canada, commended the newly inducted businesses for their dedication to addressing climate challenges and emphasized the crucial role that small entrepreneurs play in driving Ghana’s climate solutions forward stating that stating that “many of Ghana’s climate solutions come from small entrepreneurs”.

Cohort 8, upon completing the program, collectively received CAD 550,155.32 to further innovative their products and services. The ceremony marked a major milestone, as the eighth cohort of 26 entrepreneurs graduated from the GCIC’s incubation program after completing a year-long journey of growth and development. This graduation highlighted the impactful support provided by GCIC in nurturing green entrepreneurs and fostering innovation in Ghana.

According to Nielsen, 81% of global consumers strongly feel businesses should help improve the environment. This sentiment is echoed in the profiles of businesses accepted into the GCIC incubator this year. For instance, Kingsworth Farms, a male-led venture in the cohort, focuses on land restoration through neem plantation cultivation, whereas Akofresh Limited, led by a woman, offers solar-powered cold storage solutions to farmers, thereby extending the shelf life of agricultural produce.

During the combined induction and graduation ceremonies, the newly admitted businesses expressed enthusiasm about joining cohort 9, while graduating entrepreneurs looked forward optimistically to scaling new heights post-incubation.