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Friday, June 14, 2024

USAID LIBERIA LAUNCHES AGRIBUSINESS INCUBATOR & DEVELOPMENT ACTIVITY LOT B IN BONG

Date:

GBARNGA, BONG COUNTY – USAID Liberia has launched Lot B of the Cohort II Agribusiness Incubator and Development Activity in Gbarnga, Bong County.

This USAID-funded initiative aims to incubate new ideas from promising entrepreneurs, increase access to finance, foster an improved network of business service providers, strengthen agriculture value chains, create jobs, and improve the overall business-enabling environment in Liberia. The incubator services, which include facilitating business development for small and growing businesses, are designed to increase investment and productivity.

Giving an overview of the USAID-Liberia Agribusiness Incubator & Development Activity, Dieudonne K. Perry, Executive Director of Smart Liberia, stated that Lot B, designed and managed by the Monrovia Startup Consortium (MSC), aims to nurture innovative existing agribusinesses and startups. Lot B focuses on agribusinesses based in Montserrado, Bong, Grand Bassa, Rivercess, and Sinoe Counties.

According to Mr. Perry, their mission is to support innovative agribusiness ventures that demonstrate profitability and sustainability, with clear potential for accelerated growth and impact in the country.

“Our model offers a blend of hands-on business development training, mentorship, and financial support, tailored to empower entrepreneurs, especially women and youth, to make a significant impact in the agricultural sector,” he added.

He further explained that the program engages with small and emerging agribusinesses through highly participatory workshops, technical assistance, coaching, and mentorship. Questionnaires are designed to capture technical and non-technical information about agribusinesses, allowing for the assessment of their eligibility and fit for the program.

“To ensure a wide variety of agribusinesses can benefit from our program, this phase of the application process is required to ensure benefits for a diverse range of agribusiness ventures, outlining your vision, strategy, and operational competency,” Perry noted.

Also speaking at the launch in Gbarnga, Bong County, the Deputy Director for Economic Growth at the office of USAID Liberia, Joe-Hoover Gbadyu, encouraged potential applicants in the agribusiness sector to seize this opportunity. Speaking on behalf of USAID Mission Director in Liberia, Jim Wright, Gbadyu emphasized USAID’s long-standing partnership with Liberia and its commitment to the country’s development.

He urged citizens to apply, participate, and utilize their knowledge to create jobs and wealth, and to help make Liberia a food-independent country. He highlighted that small and medium businesses are the backbone of any country’s economy and inspired residents to take advantage of the opportunity.

“We, at USAID, believe from all of our experience in economies around the world that small businesses like what you are about to do or what you are already doing are the strength of the economy and generate the biggest economic growth,” he said. “We are happy to open and launch Cohort II of the USAID Liberia Agribusiness Incubator and Development Activity in the agriculture space of Liberia. So, people can now start to apply.”

He added that the USAID agribusiness incubator and development activity program is not limited to the five counties but covers all counties in Liberia.

Speaking earlier, Bong County Superintendent Hawa Norries lauded USAID Liberia for the initiative and encouraged local agribusinesses to take full advantage of the opportunities.

The USAID Liberia Agribusiness Incubator and Development Activity, launched on May 28, 2024, is being implemented by Tribe, Smart Liberia, and YONER Liberia under Cohort II, Lot B, covering Montserrado, Bong, Grand Bassa, Rivercess, and Sinoe counties. Applications are currently open and will close on June 14, 2024.

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