CMSA takes crowdfunding to Zanzibar

THE Capital Market and Security Agency (CMSA) has for the first time introduced Crowdfunding in Zanzibar showcasing its opportunity to SMEs and business developers.

CMSA Public Relations and Education Manager Mr Charles Shirima said crowdfunding was a new programme being implemented in Zanzibar, the mainland, and other areas of East Africa to support the majority of young people access funds.

“This programme includes ‘investment and donation-based crowdfunding’, which covers all kinds of business,” Shirima said when opening a single-day seminar yesterday hosted by the Zanzibar Small and Medium Industries Development Authority (SMIDA).

Crowdfunding is a way of raising money from a large number of people who each contribute a relatively small amount, typically through the internet.

SMIDA Director General Mr Soud Said Ali said that crowdfunding is a timely programme and that it has many advantages.

The DG named some of the benefits as a fast way to raise finance with no upfront fees through pitching a business project physically or online, especially for those who find it hard to access bank loans.

Mr Ali said the training targets 80 business developers and producers who will pass on the knowledge to colleagues in the urban and rural areas.

On other hand, crowdfunding has some disadvantages since it may not necessarily be an easier process to go through compared to the more traditional ways of raising finance while not all projects that apply to crowdfunding platforms get onto them.

Ms Aisha Said Omar, an entrepreneur producing cosmetics and washing detergent, thanked CMSA and SMIDA for introducing and organising the training on crowdfunding hoping it will benefit many young people in the Islands.

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