British International Investment commits US$50 million to support long-term growth of Ghanaian business

August 1, 2023

The British International Investment (BII), 's Development Finance Institution, has announced the establishment of a new platform, with commitment funding of US$50 million dollars to support 150 Ghanaian Small and Medium-size Enterprise (SMEs). 

The platform called Growth Investment Partners (GIP) will be a new alternative investment option for long-term and flexible loans of between US$500,000 – US$5 million, equivalent in local currency, to meet the needs of local businesses. 

Beyond the loan, SMEs will also receive business support services and capacity building in areas of financial management, corporate governance and environmental and social practices, to enable the sector grow in a productive, sustainable and inclusive way. 

Mr Chris Chijiutomi, BII Head of Africa, who announced the initiative on Monday in , said GIP would contribute to SME's key challenge of access to funding and unlock the economic potential in the country. 

“SME's are important to the Ghanaian economy as they create jobs and make a significant contribution to the country's gross domestic product.

However, they face many challenges with accessing growth capital through traditional funding sources including high interest rates, short-term loans, high collateral requirements and currency mismatches,” he said. 

Mr Chijiutomi said GIP working with relevant stakeholders would provide funding through a variety of financing options to meet the capital needs estimated to be about $4.8 billion of local businesses to support the country's economic reforms.   

Mr Jacob Kholi, the Chief Executive and Investment Officer (CEIO), said GIPs investment tenor was between five years and 10 years depending on the needs of the business.

“GIP is not providing subsidised funding and will price its products to earn a risk adjusted return with the Ghana reference Rate (GRR) as the basis,” he said. 

He said for SMEs to qualify they needed to have a turnover up to the local currency equivalent of US$15m, total assets up to US$15million in local currency equivalent, and employees of between 10 and 300.

The business, he said must be incorporated in Ghana, main operations must be in Ghana, and at least 50 per cent of its revenues generated from its operations in the country. 

Mr Kholi said businesses in mining, oil and gas, and ammunition/hard liquor/tobacco were excluded from the initiative.

Mr Albert Essien, Chairman Growth Investment Partners Ghana LTD, said the key areas critical for productive, sustainable, and inclusive growth of SMEs includes good corporate governance, environmental, social, and sound financial management practices.  

To complement the operations of GIP, he said, the BII had established a technical assistance programme, the Ghana Investment Support Programme to provide technical support to SMEs to make them investment ready as well as post investment. 

Mr Essien stated that the BII in the past, sponsored the establishment of the Ghana Venture Capital Fund (GVCF), a US$6million fund, together with a number of Ghanaian institutions, and other Direct Foreign Investment.  

GVCF was the first venture capital fund to be established in Sub-Saharan Africa, outside of . BII played the pioneering role at the time, just as it is doing with GIP.

Latest from Business