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IFC Helps Improve Management Skills of Small-Business Owners in Burundi

Bujumbura, Burundi, September 09, 2011— IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today in Burundi launched its training program Business Edge to strengthen management skills of owners, managers, and staff of small and medium enterprises and help this critical sector create jobs and innovate new products and production techniques.
Backed by IFC and delivered by certified local trainers, Business Edge sets a new standard for business training in Burundi.  The program offers 51 management-training courses in human resources, marketing, finance and accounting, operations, personal productivity skills, and tourism and hospitality management.
Genevieve Buzungu, Executive Secretary of the Bankers and Financial Institutions Association of Burundi, said, “I welcome Business Edge as an adequate training solution for clients looking for loans from our banking institutions but who do not know how to prepare and present a business plan or maintain proper accounting records.”
The official launch also marks the completion of a course that instructed trainers from four licensed partner training firms, including Burundi Business Incubator (BBIN), Centre de Formation et de Recherche en Entreprenariat (CUFORE) of Université Lumière de Bujumbura, Organisation et Gestion Industrielles (OGI), and Formation pour le Développement (FODEV).
Euphrasie Bigirimana, a newly certified trainer and CUFORE coordinator, said, “Through the Business Edge methodology, I have improved my understanding of different learning styles of small-business owners and managers, and now have greater competency in training and sharing my management and technical experience.”
Despite the potential of small and medium enterprises in Burundi, managers of such businesses often face difficulties in growing their enterprises, one challenge being the lack of practical and time-flexible management-training programs.
Jean-Philippe Prosper, IFC Director for East and Southern Africa, said, “IFC puts a high strategic priority on supporting small business and entrepreneurs in Africa. Through Business Edge we are able to expend affordable and highly profession training that will improve business opportunities and create more jobs in Burundi.”
About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. We help developing countries achieve sustainable growth by financing investment, providing advisory services to businesses and governments, and mobilizing capital in the international financial markets. In fiscal 2011, amid economic uncertainty across the globe, we helped our clients create jobs, strengthen environmental performance, and contribute to their local communities—all while driving our investments to an all-time high of nearly $19 billion. For more information, visit
About Business Edge TM
IFC Sustainable Business Advisory Services is supporting the growth of small and medium enterprises. Working with partners in Africa, IFC has helped thousands of entrepreneurs access the finance and skills they need to realize their potential. Business Edge™ is a face-to-face IFC training system that helps SMEs more easily access markets by strengthening their management capacity. The training can be customized for specific countries and regions in Africa. For more information, including a full list of our corporate partners and accredited training firms, visit .
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