By Cyprian Ntiamba Obi Ntui in Yaounde
Officials of the Ministry of Finance took Douala, the nation’s economic capital by storm yesterday, February 20, with the organization of the first edition of its Crowd funding initiative.
Experts were of the opinion that exploration the benefits inherent in the initiative would open avenues through which more investment capital would be generated by both public and private sector economic operators.
It is against this understanding that the Yaounde government decided to, ineptly explore and take advantage of opportunities offered by what it categorized as the reigning concept of crowd funding. “Crowd funding”, according to the experts is a new concept that involves financing of projects by the crowd.
To this end, the Ministry of Finance organized the national workshop at the Sawa Hotel in Bonanjo, Douala this February 20.
MINFI officials revealed that the aim is to put global expertise at the door step of local and international economic operators interested in establishing businesses in Cameroon.
Therefore, the workshop will create an opportunity that permits local economic operators to exchange and share ideas with experts in varied domains from within and without the country.
Organisers assured that those interested in the trending digital economy would have their appetite wetted by experts from all sectors of the digital economy.
Therefore, the theme of the workshop was agreed to be christened, “Crowd funding: Participatory financing at the service of Small and Medium sized Enterprises, SMEs.”
Apart from the Ministry of Finance, the National Credit Council, (Conseil National du Credit), CNC, the Ministry of Small and Medium Sized Enterprises, Economy, Social and Handicraft, MINPMEESA, and that of Posts and Telecommunications, MINPOSTEL, were co organizers of the workshop.
The main objective was also to educate participants about how this type of financing works. It was also aimed to unveil opportunities and advantages offered by the crowd funding initiative for the “financing of the carriers of projects”.
Experts were also opportune to present to the public the experiences of start-ups and local project promoters who have had opportunity to be financed through crowd-funding and local platform promoters.
They were also able to identify marketing and marketing strategies to be promoted in crowd-funding; to pinpoint and identify the main pitfalls and key success factors of the implementation of a national crowd funding development policy.
Government and other officials who organized the workshop continued to insist that participating in the national crowd funding workshop would mean enjoying global expertise put at the fingertips of present and potential business operators. “This national workshop was able to bring together representatives of the public and private sectors. It presented a unique platform for exchanges with experts from all sectors of the digital economy,” they concluded.