A few weeks ago Iya Biliki sent an SOS text message to her friend asking for ‘anything’, so she could feed her children the next day. Her husband lost his job during the lockdown, He had been a driver for a company that had now shut down its operations.
Iya Biliki’s small business plaiting hair had closed, as children have not been attending school, church, or even parties. Parents have opted to cut the hair of their daughters instead of spending money on plaiting their hair when they have no place to go.
From schools to event centers to hotels, traditional businesses have been hard hit by the government issued restrictions to movement and association necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic. While economists scramble and try to put figures on the losses to economies around the world, the heavy cost to traditional business structures cannot be quantified. The economic and social repercussions of the global health crisis that has rocked the world since early 2020 seems pointed to lead the global economy to a recession which many experts claim to be the worst since World War II. Other economic indicators have shown that it might get worse before it gets better.
Industries are closing down or running at diminished capacity because sourcing for raw materials has become an extreme sport due to reduced production triggered by movement restrictions. While physical distancing regulations has caused a reduction in available workforce at any time. Small scale businesses are especially hard-hit by the economic fallout of the pandemic. The demand for finished goods has also dropped as people hold on to scarce funds for the true essentials such as food and healthcare. The demand for nonessential services has also hit all-time lows due to loss of income or reduction in income.
The multiplier effect is that even those who are not directly employed by formal industries and sectors, like Iya Biliki, are still adversely affected by the collapse of these sectors.
However, even in these dark times we have seen the rise of businesses which were already uniquely positioned to scale through such times. Such businesses are dynamic in their operational approach and in capturing the market while sustaining customer base.
The creation and sustenance of such impact-driven organisations and entrepreneurial solutions will become even more imperative in the post COVID-19 recovery period and Impact Hub Lagos is leading the charge to support such businesses by offering tools and community to the ecosystem.
On Friday, August 28th, the New Economy Booster will be launched by Impact Hub Lagos. This is in collaboration with the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and Labs of Tomorrow. It is designed to support impact-driven entrepreneurs with both advanced and early-stage ventures, start-ups, non-profit organizations or initiatives based in Ghana and Nigeria that are contributing to their countries post-pandemic economic recovery.
The programme seeks to boost solutions or ventures in sectors that have been adversely affected by COVID-19, particularly those that are at risk of or have experienced losses. The sectors include Agriculture, Healthcare, Education, Creative industry and Culture, Tourism and Hospitality, Trade and Manufacturing.
The New Economy Booster programme is open to impact-driven entrepreneurs with both advanced and early-stage ventures, high-potential start-ups, non-profit organizations and initiatives based in Ghana or Nigeria that:
- Identify key economic recovery challenges and opportunities in their local community.
- Have the potential to generate a great social or environmental impact.
- Are preventing job loss or generating new employment opportunities in industries that are suffering or are at risk of suffering.
- Are scalable and are making some revenue or are projected to make some revenue in the near future.
- Are already in the market or ready to go-to-market.
The programme will run for seven months in a tailor-made online package, successful candidates will get a range of customized content and resources to develop and grow their business and network, while being guided by a team of local and global experts.
They will also get peer support from other participants, access partnership building opportunities while they can work and meet at an Impact Hub space (once lockdown restrictions get lifted).
The programme will be kicked off with a launch holding online.
Date: Friday, August 28th 2020
You can register for the event for FREE using this link.
The event will feature panelists and facilitators including Foluso Phillips of Philips Consulting, Dr Ola Brown (aka the Flying Doctor), Dr Chinny Ogunro, Ayodeji Balogun, Olori Ajayi, Nissi Madu, Liz Osho, and many others.