Tamkeen's Enterprise Development Support Programme
The first 200 Bahraini entrepreneurs have been signed to Tamkeen's Enterprise Development Support programme in the first few months since the launch of the second phase of the ambitious initiative. Through Tamkeen's flagship programme, the beneficiaries received just under BD600,000 in financial support, which has been invested to improve the Bahraini enterprises and making them more competitive and sustainable in line with Bahrain's Economic Vision 2030,.
This announcement came following Tamkeen’s sponsorship of 30 Bahraini enterprises at the Bahrain International eGovernment Forum through the Growth Assistance Scheme, one of the the Enterprise Development Programme’s main initiatives.
The announcement coincided with a study conducted KPMG Fakhro, which manages the Enterprise Development Support programme on behalf of Tamkeen to measure the performance of the programme in Q1 of 2010. The study, which surveyed the beneficiaries of the programme and its four main schemes - Business Development Scheme, Technical Assistance Scheme, Quality Management Systems Scheme, and the Growth Assistance Scheme – revealed that the project is progressing according to plan.
Beneficiaries expressed their overall satisfaction with the assistance offered to them through the programme, praising its comprehensiveness which addresses their most pressing business needs in all industry sectors.
The study also showed that enterprises in the sectors of agriculture, animal preserve and fishery, manufacturing, information and communication, wholesale and retail Trade comprised the majority of the beneficiaries. Bahraini businesswomen made up approximately 20% of the total. There was also a marked improvement in the general perception of the programme by the participating enterprises, with 90% of the beneficiaries expressing their approval after enrollment.
The overwhelming majority of beneficiaries also commended the speed and ease with which the application process is completed, noting that the support of the KPMG Fakhro teams in helping guide them through the application process to ensure effective implementation of the programme.
Mr. Mohammed Bucheery, Tamkeen’s Private Sector Support Senior Manager, expressed his satisfaction with the level of response from Bahraini entrepreneurs wanting to develop their businesses and put them on a fast track toward a more prosperous future. "The success of this phase of the leading programme proves that the schemes we offer are in line with the needs of the private sector and are making an important contribution to economic prosperity," he said.
The Growth Assistance Scheme attracted the majority of the beneficiaries. To date, Tamkeen co-financed the participation of 144 Bahraini companies – 70% of the total number of beneficiaries so far -- in a number of major local and international exhibitions. Under this scheme, Tamkeen contributes up to 90 percent of the total costs of registration and stalls. The Bahrain International eGoverunment Forum, Gulf Industry Exhibition and Bahrain International Garden Show are prominent examples of such opportunities afforded to Bahraini enterprises to showcase their products and services, connect with other establishments, and learn the best and most modern practices in the industry to help businesses achieve prosperity and sustainability.
As for the Technical Assistance Scheme, 62 Bahraini enterprises have benefited from the financial assistance that Tamkeen offers through the scheme thus far. Under this scheme, Tamkeen provides 50% of the technical cost -- up to BD10,000 for small enterprises and BD15,000 for medium and large enterprises -- to help entrepreneurs adopt new and modern technology that help modernise and improve the performance of their businesses.
Mr. Bucheery also focused on the important role the Business Development Scheme and the Quality Management Scheme play in assisting organizations. The Business Development Scheme provides beneficiaries with a consultancy service in a wide variety of areas which gives them the necessary tools to improve their businesses. The Quality Management Scheme is a co-financing scheme that allows businesses to implement an internationally accredited quality management system such as ISO, Kaizen, among others.
Mr. Bucheery appealed to all business sectors who meet the application criteria for Tamkeen's various schemes to apply to benefit from the programmes available to them, noting that the second phase of the Enterprise Development Support programme is designed to accommodate about 1,000 additional enterprises over the next two years with a budget of BD12.35million (BD 12,350,000).
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