IBEX Microfinance and Business Development Training

  Training at the Corina Hotel on December 21

MONROVIA, January 20 — Last month, more than 20 professionals who provide support services to businesses gathered at the Corina Hotel to learn how they can best serve their clients and grow their own business at the same time. The daylong training, which took place on December 21, was attended by representatives from microfinance institutions and business development services organizations. The event was organized by the USAID-funded Liberia Investing for Business Expansion (IBEX) Program.

The purpose of the training was to share information and understand how traditional business development services firms and microfinance institutions can work together to support Liberian businesses. By training and building the capacity of microfinance borrowers, they become less risky and microfinance institutions in turn become more profitable. Working with borrowers to get them investment ready and prepare them to perform well and manage their loans and pay them back in full contributes to the success of microfinance institutions and has a positive impact on the national economy. The participants discussed best practices and guiding principles for successful business development services for micro-, small, and medium sized enterprises. These practices and approaches focus on maximizing marketing and outreach, building a sustainable business model, and identifying the right clients for their services. Watchen Bruce, who is country director for the IBEX Program, challenged the participants to prepare themselves to attract other sources of funding to expand their businesses.

The training helped participants understand the strengths and weaknesses of microfinance institutions and business development services firms. In addition to knowledge sharing among the two types of services,  many participants appreciated the opportunity to network with other practitioners.

Steve Gaye is president of the Network of Microfinance Institutions in Liberia. “I’m too impressed,” Gaye said. “We need to improve our networking activities and be prepared to succeed.”

Hawa Gotomo of Making Enterprises added, “I now know the importance of networking and will not overburden myself, take unnecessary stress and too much time on a piece of work just to get it done myself.”

Other entities represented included the Foundation for Women and Women and Children Development Association of Liberia, and a core team of IBEX staff who helped to facilitate the training. IBEX provides services to financial institutions and businesses to increase the ability of smaller firms to access finance to grow their businesses and strengthen the overall economy.


This news release is made possible by the support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents are the sole responsibility of IESC and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.