SADC energy entrepreneurs meet in Windhoek

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Eleven select entrepreneurs from different SADC countries are taking part in a capacity building workshop which started in Windhoek on Monday and ends on Thursday.

The workshop under the SADC Renewable Energy Entrepreneurship Support Facility was organised by the International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena) and the SADC Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (Sacreee).

According to the facilitator Helena Shipanga the workshop is a technical support and mentorship platform to enhance and strengthen the capacity of micro, small, and medium entrepreneurs in assessing the business potential of sustainable energy, developing viable business plans and funding requests, and managing and maintaining their businesses successfully.

“The entrepreneurs are skilled people in areas of solar energy, biogas, engineering and other spheres, who are here to get more skills in digital marketing for online presence, to learn strategic development of their businesses and to enhance their leadership skills,” said Shipanga.

Another facilitator Wency Ndjitavia said the focus of the masterclass is to enhance soft skills including communication, leadership, decision making and problem solving to enhance competitiveness and business practices for the participants drawn from Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

“Their first session was conducted online, but this is the first face-to-face session they are having and we are happy it is being held in Namibia,” she said.

Shipanga said the next session will focus on how to pitch ideas to investors as the entrepreneurs face challenges of access to finance.

The SADC Renewable Energy Entrepreneurship Support Facility is being implemented in the 16 SADC member countries and builds on the memorandum of understanding signed in February 2017 between Sacreee and Irena, to support renewable energy market development in the region through capacity building of small to medium-sized entrepreneurs.

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