MTN Uganda Paves the Way for Women Entrepreneurs

The applying company should demonstrate an annual revenue of a minimum of UGX 60 million.

MTN Uganda Paves the Way for Women Entrepreneurs
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MTN Uganda  earmarked $4 million which is equivalent to UGX 15Billion to facilitate the newly launched project dubbed "The MTN@25 Advancing Women Entrepreneur".

The MTN@25 Advancing Women Entrepreneur -AWE project aligns with MTN Uganda's commitment to gender equality, youth empowerment, and inclusivity in the technology sector.

Sylvia Mulinge, the MTN CEO said the project focus to support Women entrepreneurs specializing in IT, network services, digital solutions, facility management, and commercial products and services.

She noted that  the initiative aims to empower women entrepreneurs, promote diversity, and strengthen Uganda's technology sector while fostering opportunities for all.

Women entrepreneurs specializing in IT, network services, digital solutions, facility management, and commercial products and services have been encouraged to apply.

The initiative aims to empower women entrepreneurs, promote diversity, and strengthen Uganda's technology sector while fostering opportunities for all.

Sylvia said that under this project, MTN Uganda is partnering with MTN Mobile Money (MOMO), The American Tower Corporation (ATC), UN Women, The Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU), Mastercard, DFCU Bank, Innovation Village, NSSF Hi Innovators and Outbox to make it success.

''This initiative underscores MTN Uganda's unwavering commitment to fostering a more inclusive and connected society'. Sylvia noted.

The AWE project aspires to usher in a new era of improved business ownership, enriched diversity, and enhanced equality in the supply chain. It seeks to champion women's participation and commendable contributions to the thriving tech industry.  she noted

“As part of our commitment to this cause, we are determined to increase the local spend on women entrepreneurs participating in the top spend categories in the telecom industry and build an inclusive market-oriented platform that supports and attracts women entrepreneurs.” Ms. Sylvia Mulinge, MTN Uganda Chief Executive Officer said.

On average, women-owned micro-enterprises in Uganda generate 30 percent lower profits than their male counterparts (World Bank 2019).

Lower levels of innovation, lower use of capital and labor, and sector-based sex segregation are all factors associated with women entrepreneurs’ poorer business outcomes relative to men in Uganda.

Moreover, women enterprise owners in Uganda also use 41 percent fewer hours of labor, have 50 percent less capital, and are 37 percent less likely to have introduced a new product over the previous 12 months compared with men.

Sylvia Mulinge, MTN CEO, also stated, "The AWE project aligns with MTN core values and strategic vision, which is to create opportunities for everyone, regardless of gender or background. 

The goal of the AWE project is ambitious yet achievable. "Our vision is to have 250 women suppliers by 2025, with the aim of onboarding 50 women by the end of this year. 

The AWE project represents a cornerstone of MTN Uganda's sustainability approach, marked by a resolute focus on gender equality, unwavering support for women in business, and the empowerment of the youth, ensuring that opportunities are accessible to all, including individuals with disabilities.

She noted that to participate in the AWE initiative, women entrepreneurs are encouraged to meet the following criteria:

Ownership: Your business must exhibit at least 50% ownership by women, either wholly or through a majority shareholding.

Active Business Operations: Your applying company should boast actively managed and women-led operations.

According to Sylvia, MTN Uganda enthusiastically welcomes Expressions of Interest (EOI) from women entrepreneurs spanning the following categories; IT Equipment and Related Services,Network Services,Digital Services, Facility Management Services,Commercial Products and Services amonng other.

Women entrepreneurs who meet the eligibility criteria are encouraged to seize this opportunity to become part of MTN Uganda's esteemed list of suppliers by submitting thier application by via https://www.mtn.co.ug/awe/ before 31st October 2023.

On her part, Dorothy Kabagambe Ssemanda, Chief Executive Officer of ATC Uganda, explained, currently more than 90% of ATC  annual high spend on engineering projects is executed by suppliers which are not women-owned or operated.

This is a narrative we are here to change, a shift we are dedicated to leading. We have taken a solid step in this direction by ring-fencing a proportion of contracts exclusively for AWE candidates. We acknowledge the high working capital requirements, and we are here to navigate these waters together’’. She said

According to her to ensure the success and growth of AWE candidates, ATC will offer robust technical training and field assistance, covering a broad spectrum from onboarding to customized training tailored for unique challenges.

Stephen Asiimwe, Chief Executive Officer of Private Sector Foundation Uganda noted that this is not just a simple beginning; a catalyst for change that is gaining momentum with every passing moment. ‘’As we take these first steps, let us all remember that revolutions are built on the passion, resilience, and commitment of individuals who dare to dream and act. Together, we can turn the tides and create a brighter future for all’. He noted

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