Ashesi’s Innovation Centre to support entrepreneurs grow climate resilient businesses

Quist lecturing students at Ashesi University
Quist lecturing students at Ashesi University

Ashesi University’s Ghana Climate Innovation Centre (GCIC) over the next nine months will develop and support 22 entrepreneurs to grow climate resilient businesses through an incubation programme.

Each enterprise at the end will be equipped with needed mindset, skillset and toolset to go the long-haul with their climate innovation.

The enterprises selected from seven regions operate in areas, including climate smart agriculture, waste management, energy efficiency organisations and solar energy.

The 22 forms the 7th Cohort of GCIC’s business incubator programme under the funding of Global Affairs Canada.

Madam Ruka Sanusi, the Executive Director of GCIC, speaking at the induction in Accra, stated that between June 2017 and 2020, the Centre had supported entrepreneurs to generate cumulative revenues of US$2.06million.

She said a total of 733 new jobs had been created, and that additional early and growth-stage financing of more than USD2million had also been raised.

They have also sequestered carbon dioxide emissions of 14,500 megatonnes.

Last year, she stated that, the Centre helped to avoid emissions of 70,684.47megatonnes, which was about six times over the five-year target of 10,000 megatonnes, and had helped generate revenues of $1,303.323.

Dr Dramani Bukari, the Director of Partnerships, Entrepreneurship, and Investment at GCIC, took the entrepreneurs through the Centre’s Technical and Product Development workstream and highlighted how the entrepreneurs could improve on their product innovation to meet global standards by using the support services offered.

He said, “The GCIC works to improve technologies and products, whilst stimulating climate risk mitigation and improving management practices. We also invested in ensuring that our cohorts grow climate resilient businesses.”

“Our grants are available after application and involve the submission of evidence of the efficient and effective utilisation of the awarded funds.”

Mr Daniel Ababio, Senior Manager at EY Ghana, said, “The M&E process that EY implements helps us to track the growth of businesses before and after the 9-month period. We are also able to accurately quantify and report on the support that the GCIC gives, and we look forward to sharing your success stories during and at the end of the program.”

The GCIC’s symbolic presentation of a potted asparagus fern plant to each entrepreneur with an asparagus fern potted plant, is symbolic of the process of nurturing a green business and encourages entrepreneurs to nurture the gift as a reminder of the dedication they will need to demonstrate how to grow their businesses during and after the business incubation period.

Other presentations were delivered by the GCIC finance team on opportunities for GCIC supported businesses to pitch for and access financial grants.

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