Kountable Ltd: Leapfrogging Rwandan enterprises into vitality

On 6 December 2017 at 08:25

Accessing credit has remained one of the major single obstacle to financing internal and external trade in Rwanda. Some institutions, however, realizing the need, have come up to facilitate traders and other SMEs, creating bigger trade opportunities, employment and improved profitability. Kountable Ltd is one such new entity whose interventions are enormously benefiting internal and international traders and SMEs in Rwanda, helping small and medium-sized enterprises to execute their deals without having to wait for banks to give them financial credit.

In 2015, Kountable Ltd, an American company supporting young entrepreneurs to implement tender contracts, opened shop in Rwanda.

Founded by Christopher Hale from Silcon Valley, San Francisco, the company supports entrepreneurs’ projects with loans without collaterals.

When successful bidders lack enough funds to implement the projects or make supplies, Kountable Ltd offers them loans which are then serviced when they are paid at a monthly interest rate of 3%, compared to 17.5% charged by commercial banks.

In 2016, Kountable Ltd financed more than 30 projects worth $6 million to suppliers of hospital materials , ICT equipment, construction and education materials among others.

Speaking to IGIHE, the Kountable Ltd country director, Leandre Cyusa Mucyowiraba said that entrepreneurs have continued to trust the company, thanks to the good services they provide.

He says that once suppliers sign contracts in the range of $30,000, Kountable supports them with ordering materials to execute high-profile deals, allowing them to expand more quickly, hire and train more staff, and develop capacity and learn, significantly multiplying their contribution to Rwanda’s economic and social growth goals. By January 2017, Kountable had partnered with 41 entrepreneurs to execute 57 projects worth USD7 million. Currently, more projects worth USD3 million are under implementation process.

Among the 30 projects that Kountable supported in 2016, hospital supplies accounted for 43.76%, ICT 30.31%, construction 16.27% and education facilities 4.96%.

Cyusa says that material suppliers dominate their clientele due to the fact that banks do not easily provide them with loans as kountable does.

So far, Kountable Ltd has partnered with different banks including KCB, Ecobank and Equity Bank to support entrepreneurs who have no collaterals to access loans.

In ICT facilities, the company links Rwandan entrepreneurs with international IT companies like Apple, HP, Cisco, Dell and Panasonic, among others, to enable them buy quality and low-cost equipment related with their tender requirements.
Cyusa says that they provide guaranty on ordered materials.

He said that they have an app available on play store and Apple store and on their web www.kountable.com .which helps suppliers monitor and track movement of merchandise during the shipment.

On receiving applications for financing, Kountable takes 14 days doing evaluation and assessing the viability of the project.

The Kountable Ltd country director, Leandre Cyusa Mucyowiraba