Rwanda: Best investors to be rewarded.

Saul Butera



claire_akamanzi.jpgRwanda Development Board (RDB) has started the search for 15 businesses that excelled in 2010 as a way of attracting private investments that will spur economic growth and job creation in the country through encouraging business excellence.

RDB plans to recognize businesses, individuals and SMEs that made an impact towards the growth of Rwanda’s economy. The awards ceremony scheduled to take place on the January 28.

“The awards are meant to inspire the existing and future businesses to excel leading to economic growth, boosting job creation as well as alleviate poverty and stimulate rapid economic development,” RDB’s Chief Operating Officer, Claire Akamanzi said during a press conference yesterday.

Formerly known as RDB investor and exporter of the year awards, this year’s awards have been rebranded as Business Excellence Awards. They are regarded as the most prestigious awards in Rwanda’s investment sector.

RDB has outsourced a private company called GPO PARTNERS Rwanda Ltd to ensure free and fair selection of outstanding companies. However, final winners will be selected by an independent panel of eminent persons from the public and private sector.

Akamanzi also said that the awards boos make the over-role business community to grow and also become more competitive to also be nominated.

This time around, the awards will focus not only on big companies but will also put into consideration SMEs so as to encourage them to grow. SMEs form 90 percent of the business community in Rwanda.

In this year’s Gala event, 15 categories were nominated, including investor of the year, exporter of the year and SME of the year. They also include sector winners in tourism, ICT, general manufacturing, agro-processing, mining, finance, real estate and special category winners; customers service winner, women entrepreneur of the year and the most business friendly district.

The criteria used to select the best 15 companies include, profitability, creation of a forward and backward linkages with local SMEs, demonstrate innovation and technology transfer, Corporate Social Responsibility policy, ability to act as a role model to other investors and reinvesting into the business to sustain growth rates.

Akamanzi also said that they monitor winners and advise them in different aspects.“The entrepreneurship spirit is growing and the other awards are among the factors which also encourage the registering of businesses.”


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