Econet Wireless Founder Strive Masiyiwa and his wife Tsitsi Masiyiwa have pledged USD 100Mn to support rural businesses and entrepreneurs focusing on the rural parts of Zimbabwe.
As they pledged, the couple launched the USD 100 Mn challenge aimed at assisting rural enterprises to grow their businesses. The tycoon revealed that he has reached out to his friends to contribute more funds so that the project can grow beyond Africa.
“I want to use this initiative to challenge global donors to support mass entrepreneurship in Africa by putting my own money into what I believe. My wife is currently on a major drive to get this concept adopted by other philanthropists so that we can push into other African countries,” he said.
Masiyiwa revealed this in a post on his Facebook page on Wednesday 6th February. The USD 100 Mn Fund will be contributed solely by the Econet founder and then disbursed as loans through a Zimbabwean commercial bank.
The minimum amount of loan one can take will be USD 1000 whereas USD 10K will be the highest amount an individual can be given. The maximum interest rate will be 5 percent and the loan will not require any collateral. Repayments will go into a revolving fund so that it benefits more and more entrepreneurs.
All entrepreneurs who apply for the loan will be required to undergo training before given access to the loans.
Strive Masiyiwa is a London-based Zimbabwean businessman, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. He is the Founder and Chairman of the Econet Group, a pan-African telecommunications, media and technology company with operations and investments in 29 countries.
Information extracted from econetwireless.com reveals Masiyiwa has for a long time mentored growing entrepreneurs through his Facebook page which has 3.6 Mn followers. For almost two years, Facebook has identified his platform as having the most engaged following of any business leader in the world.
The billionaire has been selected twice by Fortune Magazine as World’s 50 Greatest Leaders”.
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