Using a multi-sector approach, AECOM offers USAID/Egypt and the Ministry of Trade and Industry technical support to business service providers, entrepreneurs, and micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to help develop new business ideas, strengthen essential business development services (BDS), introduce new financial tools, and enhance financial literacy and management. SEED is also focusing on improving access to essential financing, information and technology; reducing bureaucratic procedures; addressing policies that impact ease of doing business; and expanding and improving public one-stop shops responsible for business registration and licensing.

Selected Outcomes

  • 3,100+ new and better employment opportunities (i.e. closer to home, better pay, changing from part time to full time, etc.) were provided through Incubators, One-Stop-Shops and MSMEs (Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises) that were supported through SEED’s business plan competitions and exhibitions.
  • 1150+ entrepreneurs were supported to launch or grow their business models.
  • 12 Incubators established or significantly expanded in 6 governorates (Cairo, Giza, Gharbeya, Alexandria, Assuit, Qena).
  • 740+ MSME managers and entrepreneurs benefitted from financial literacy programs.
  • 8,710 clients benefited from financial services provided through SEED-assisted financial intermediaries, including non-financial institutions or actors.
  • Supported the participation of 190+ MSMEs in different local and international exhibitions and held matchmaking events where the MSMEs were introduced to suppliers and buyers within five selected value chain (readymade garments, plastics, dairy, fishery and automotive).

Project Highlight: Financial Literacy Workshops Helping Women Entrepreneurs in Egypt

Egypt SEED
A financial literacy workshop for entrepreneurs at the Arab Academy for Banking and Financial Services in Cairo, April 21, 2018.

Supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), AECOM’s Strengthening Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development (SEED) project aims to strengthen the development of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and promote entrepreneurship in Egypt. In April, May and July of this year, the project offered financial literacy and capacity building trainings to small and medium enterprise (SME) owners and managers. AECOM partnered with CHF Management and Consulting Services Egypt SAE – Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) Loan Guarantee Facility (CHF/OPIC) to hold eight, two-day financial literacy workshops in Cairo and Alexandria, benefitting 205 participants, including 162 women. These women entrepreneurs represented diverse sectors such as handicrafts, events management, clothing manufacturing, and information and communications technology (ICT).

Egypt SEED

A financial literacy workshop at the Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (TIEC), July 25, 2018.

The main objective of these workshops was to provide participants with the basic financial and banking knowledge needed to effectively run their SMEs, including sessions on the basics of accounting and finance, banking and loan processes, business registration and other topics critical to SME owners. At each session, roundtables dedicated to women entrepreneurs provided opportunities for interaction with bank representatives about what it takes to gain access to financing to expand their businesses. The female entrepreneurs were encouraged to network with like-minded peers at the workshop in an effort to expand their business contacts and build support networks.

Dina El-Salam, an aspiring entrepreneur who’s developing a platform to export handmade products, remarked that, “The sessions were good as I learned how to read financial statements and discovered extra tips and tricks. The legal forms were the best part, as they will be very useful for me—especially the capital portion. Now I know that when I develop my business it will be a Limited Company (L.C.).”

For more information, contact marcus.kendrick@aecom.com.