The Ghana High Commissioner to the UK, H.E. Emmanuel Victor Smith has called on the Ghanaian diaspora to look back home and invest in businesses. He said even though the focus of Ghana investment promotion activities has in the past focused on foreign corporate bodies, it is very necessary to recognize that investments undertaken by Ghanaians could be a sure ‘bet’ for sustainable development in Ghana. He emphasized that, experience globally has shown that building a vibrant sustained and sustainable development requires indigenous businesses.
Delivering his keynote address at the Ghana Angel Investor Network (GAIN) ‘Road Show’ event in London organised by the Ghana Venture Capital Trust Fund in collaboration with then Ghana High Commission in London to showcase and introduce GAIN to the Ghanaian Diaspora, Ambassador Smith said, as a developing country, Ghana cannot underestimate the key role small and medium scale businesses play in our economy. He noted that, a lot of graduates and many would be good and great entrepreneurs have their business ideas locked up on the shelves because of lack of long term and adequate capital.
He said; the banks are not attractive due to the high interest rates, lack of long term lending terms and demand for collateral which most of these would be entrepreneurs do not have. He commended the efforts of the government and the management of the Ghana Venture Capital Trust Fund and called on the diaspora to take advantage of the GAIN platform which provides a secure formalize platform to invest in small and medium size businesses in Ghana. Saying this is a very good avenue through which to enter in the Ghanaians business environment, participate and own part of the economy.
On his part, the CEO of Ghana Venture Capital Trust Fund (VCTF) Mr Daniel Duku who led the team to London said, the trust fund set up GAIN in 2011 to help small and medium size businesses in Ghana and also to promote to the diaspora, the very good opportunities that exist in Ghana and how through GAIN, individuals and group of persons can securely invest in businesses which have great prospects in Ghana.
Mr Percival Ampomah, head of Investments at Ghana VCTF speaking at the event highlighted some success stories and the returns which investors have gained, the securities that have been built into the operations of the GAIN to ensure that investor’s monies are secured and safe from start to finish. Further, Mr Ampomah gave an example of an investment which was done in an agro –processing sector which yielded a return of 64% within an 18 months period for the investor. He also pointed out some incentives which government has put in place and has helped place Ghana at the top of countries which have become very attractive for investment. These include 0% tax on all investments income for 5 years with a further 5 years window during which loses can be carried forward and the ability to repatriate 100% of all investment proceeds.
Giving an overview of the GAIN platform itself, Madam Leticia Brown said, the platform is free to join at www.gain.com.gh and all enquiries can also be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org. She said to help lower the potential risk for any investor; the team at GAIN goes through a lot of processes in filtering the businesses that are presented to potential investors. Training programmes and continues mentoring is also giving to the entrepreneurs to ensure the businesses become a great success.