May 20, 2024

Strathmore University Business School and IFC Launch Investment Academy to Build Capacity of Somali Business Leaders

Michael Nyabaige

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Over the past week, Strathmore University Business School in partnership with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) has been training over 20 Somali investment-focused professionals in the IFC Somali Investment Academy (SOMINA) Programme.

Launched on Monday, May 13th, 2024, by the Somali Ambassador to Kenya, Amb. Jabril Ibrahim Abdulle, this Programme marks the beginning of a significant three-year partnership between SBS and IFC, aimed at bolstering the skills and knowledge of investment-focused professionals in Somalia and Somaliland.

SOMINA is meticulously designed to cater to officials and professionals involved in private sector development in Somalia. The primary goal of this Programme is to fortify the capacity and empowerment of Somali private sector executives and business owners, equipping them with the necessary tools to drive sustainable and inclusive growth.

In his keynote address, Ambassador Abdulle reaffirmed the Somali government’s commitment to fostering inclusive investments and shared prosperity. He extended his gratitude for the unwavering support from partners like SBS and IFC, encouraging participants to embrace the learning experience wholeheartedly and commit to fostering inclusive growth in Somalia  and Somaliland.

Ambassador Abdulle further highlighted the positive impact of Somali investors across the region, emphasizing their crucial role in job creation and economic development in countries including Kenya, Uganda, South Africa, Tanzania, and South Sudan.

Dr. Vincent Ogutu, Vice Chancellor of Strathmore University, underscored the pivotal role of education in societal transformation, setting the tone for an inspiring journey of growth and evolution. Strathmore University Business School remains committed to developing great African leaders.

During the intensive week-long sessions, the participants engaged with distinguished faculty from both SBS and IFC. The curriculum covered a wide array of crucial topics, including risk assessment, analysis and allocation, corporate governance, alternate dispute resolution, and accounting and financial reporting. These sessions aimed to provide participants with a robust understanding of the essential aspects of investment and business management in the Somali and Somaliland context.

The sessions culminated in an interactive panel session, featuring Mr Mohamud Ahmed Mohamud, the former CEO, of Kenya Deposit Insurance Corporation (KDIC) and an entrepreneur, Mr. Munir Ahmed, CEO of BBS Mall,  Ms. Sumayya Hassan, Board Member, of Takaful Insurance and Mr Adan Birik Abdi, Chief Finance Officer of Dalkom and an expert in structuring finance. The session was aimed at giving the participants first-hand experience from established industry players.

The Programme came to an end on Friday, 17th May 2024 with a colorful graduation ceremony to celebrate the participants’ dedication and achievements, marking the beginning of a transformative journey for Somali business leaders.

The SOMINA Programme represents a significant step towards building a robust and dynamic private sector in Somalia and Somaliland. By equipping professionals with essential skills and knowledge, SBS and IFC are laying the groundwork for sustainable economic growth and development.

Learn more about the SOMINA Programme here

By Juliet Hinga

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