Black Business Council and Ubank set up R1bn Economy Fund

Ubank

  • The Black Business Council and Ubank have partnered to set up an R1-billion township and rural economy fund.
  • The fund will invest primarily in IT-based enterprises and digitalisation, manufacturing, agriculture and agri-processing, retail, infrastructure and tourism sectors.
  • The fund would provide immense opportunities to small businesses, particularly black businesses, which he said makes a positive contribution to townships.

The Black Business Council and Ubank have partnered to set up an R1-billion township and rural economy fund .

In a statement yesterday, Ubank said it signed the “historic partnership agreement” on Wednesday, 13th May, to set up an R1-billion fund to revitalise the township and rural economy.

For the next five years, an sum of R250-million will be available per year to lend to mainly black-owned businesses located in townships and rural areas.

Ubank CEO Luthando Vutula revealed that white entrepreneurs who built solutions for the township and rural areas could also tap the fund.

The fund will invest primarily in IT-based enterprises and digitalisation, manufacturing, agriculture and agri-processing, retail, infrastructure and tourism sectors.

Ubank called on the BBC to create an R1bn Township and Rural Economy Fund, a historic partnership.

sUbank disclosed in the statement that the aim of the BBC partnership is to establish township and rural market solutions for black businesses, support black industry development, encourage economic transformation, and be a catalyst for change and inclusive growth.

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The fund will be managed through a joint steering committee of the Ubank / BBC that will ensure that the fund achieves its intended objective, which is to support township and rural economies in line with the government’s Township and Rural Entrepreneurship Program (TREP) mandate and fund, approved in March.

In the statement, BBC ‘s head of policy Tilson Manyoni called the partnership with Ubank a “major milestone” for BBC as it repositions the BBC as a policy advocacy organisation, and an implementing partner.

“It will ensure that our country is transformed, develop the township and rural economy as well as build a new cohort of black industrialists, and black businesses. We are now bringing policy advocacy to implementation,” he said.

Commenting in the same address, Vutula confirmed the fund would provide “immense opportunities” to small businesses, particularly black businesses, which he said makes a positive contribution to townships.

“It will furthermore enable the township businesses to become active participants in our overall economy, and have some resources to give them the prospect of success,” he said.

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