Adapt and innovate to remain resilient – GEA boss urges SME owners
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Enterprise Agency (GEA), Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, has urged entrepreneurs and owners of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to adapt and innovate amid the Covid pandemic to remain resilient and competitive.
Speaking at the African Business Innovation Forum on Thursday, September 9, 2021, Mrs Kosi Yankey-Ayeh averred SMEs that are unable to adapt and innovate amid the pandemic will not survive post Covid.
Adding that her outfit for instance, had to innovate amid the pandemic and change from being the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) to the Ghana Enterprise Agency (GEA) to better serve the needs of SMEs across the country.
She further urged SMEs to digitalize their operations to further enhance their competitiveness and resilience.
“Covid has taught us [businesses] how to change, innovate and become competitive globally. Entrepreneurs need to take adapt, have a new way of thinking, pivot to new levels and build relationships and friendships with other businesses to be resilient and innovate in times like the Covid-19 pandemic,” she stated.
“Currently, there’s no word powerful as innovation in the business world, it’s the way of life and the way of the future. The NBSSI for instance had to change to GEA due to innovation to meet the needs of entrepreneurs and SMEs,” she added.
Speaking further at the event, Mrs Yankey-Ayeh noted that the focus of GEA is to help SMEs become and remain globally competitive.
“SMEs are the new focus of GEA, SMEs make up close to 70 percent of businesses in the country, a significant source of employment and the backbone of the economy.
“As GEA, what we currently do is to support SMEs and help them remain competitive globally,” she noted.
The Africa Business Innovation Forum (ABIForum) is a maiden forum for businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The forum aimed at helping businesses navigate and overcome the adverse impact of the pandemic.
The overarching objective of the forum according to the CEO of ABIForum, Precious Gyau, is to broaden the horizon of entrepreneurs as well as create a platform to inspire SMEs to be globally competitive.
“Challenges faced by SMEs are many and huge, but I believe we can all contribute to create a platform that will help Ghanaian SMEs grow and become globally competitive and drive economic growth.
“And this forum will do just that, it will educate entrepreneurs and owners of SMEs about business sustainability, competitiveness and innovation particularly amid the pandemic,” he said.