Bulawayo vendors upbeat

VENDORS in Bulawayo are optimistic that the loan booth facility recently set up by the Small Enterprises Development Corporation (Sedco) will boost their business .

Report by Gamma Mudarikiri

Sedco last week announced that it had set up a loan booth facility for 4 000 vendors in Bulawayo to give loans of at least $200 and a maximum of $1 000. The loans are given at an interest rate of 15% per annum.

Vendors interviewed by Southern Eye last week said they applied for the loans and were awaiting assessment by Sedco.

A vendor, Fabi Muzunze, said she applied for a loan of $1 000 and was awaiting assessment.

“There is an assessment team from Sedco coming to assess our businesses and thereafter, we are expecting to access the loans, although I am not sure as to when this will happen,” Mazunze said.

Another vendor, Madodana Zondo, who sells vegetables, said he applied for a loan of $500 last week and is expecting the funding to be made available soon to boost his business.

Zondo said he was targeting profits of close to $300 a month if he gets the loan. One of the applicants, Nomathemba Mbambo said she was expecting to be loaned $500 and was confident she would manage to pay back the money because she was anticipating improved profits.

Since 2009, the corporation has funded 134 loan booths nationwide, reaching a total of 1 800 beneficiaries with a cumulative value of $1 million across the 10 provinces.

The loan booth is an initiative by vendors themselves and Sedco provides training and financial support in the running of the facility.

The loan size will be determined by the number of applications and the ability of the corporation to meet the demand as it relies mostly on the National Budget allocation to fund micro-entrepreneurs.

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