Entrepreneurs thrive through the net

A website designed by the World Bank in 2002 to help entrepreneurs set up a business in emerging markets is now being used by more than two million people a year.

by World Bank
Last Updated: 23 Jul 2013

The Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Toolkit was set up by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) – part of the World Bank Group. It uses the latest information and communication technologies to promote sustainable business practices amongst SMEs. More than 80% of users report that the toolkits provide access to content that is useful to SMEs.

The toolkit is organised in seven core business areas: accounting and finance, business planning, human resources, legal and insurance, marketing and sales, operations, and IT. It is then adapted by local distribution partners to include local specificities (regulation, local business directories etc) and translated in the area's language.

The SME Toolkit has now been launched in 12 languages, and there are now 24 different toolkit websites, and an additional 3,000 CD-ROMs have been distributed by local partners (NGOs, SME service providers, local banks etc) and used in workshops.

Shyam Badan Shrestha, managing director of Nepal Knotcraft Centre (NKC), attended a workshop organised by BizMantra, a local partner of IFC. Despite being a seasoned entrepreneur in Nepal, Shrestha's skills in accounting were weak. By attending the workshop, she re-thought completely her pricing strategy, and managed to increase her revenue and profit. "This is a huge support for SMEs in streamlining management related issues," Shrestha says.

Source: World Bank

Review by Emilie Filou

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