|Nobin Udyokta Investment Program|
Nobin Udyokta (Young Entrepreneur) Investment Program is a Social Business initiative of GK that aims to transform the youth unemployment into entrepreneurship through financing & incubating aspiring entrepreneurs. In the end of 2013, Grameen Kalyan (GK) initiated "Nobin Udyokta (young entrepreneur) Investment Program" for job seekers among the educated and uneducated youths of GB borrowers' families to motivate them to be entrepreneurs and be the job givers. The inspiration behind undertaking the program was Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus's worldly-acclaimed & highly influential concept of Social Business.
Under this program GK provides funds as equity for the businesses/projects submitted by the Nobin Udyoktas (the young entrepreneurs). The proponent of the business or entrepreneur has to justify why s/he qualifies for receiving investment for the relevant project at Social Business Design Lab organized by Yunus Centre. They outline and clarify various aspects of the project such as the risks factors, availability of raw material, and marketing strategy/policy for their own benefits. GK organizes screening exercise workshop at the local area for the target group/entrepreneurs to come up with innovative, conventional business ideas. Business plans goes through several layers of refinement and improvement until they are considered by the programmer to be ready for investment. Each enterprise/business being declared for funding is considered as an individual pilot project. Till the entrepreneur is able to take full ownership of the business project close monitoring and supervision is undertaken by GK. GK will just take back only its investment amount from the business within the predetermined time frame as noted in the agreement with the entrepreneur. To the Nobin Udyokta, it will be traditional business for her/him and s/he will make profit out of the business as usual.
Entrepreneur selection criteria:
1. Children of current (at least 4 years of association) or past (at least 7 years of association) Grameen Bank (GB) borrowers will get preference;
2. Must be from low income family and willing to be self-employed;
3. The entrepreneur himself/herself can't be loanee of GB except higher education loanee;
4. The age of the entrepreneur must be within 18-35 years (relaxable in case of female candidates);
5. Must be Bangladeshi and willing to run business individually or jointly (with no more than five partners);
6. Must be honest & enthusiastic and obedient & faithful to the objective and term & conditions of GK.
Update (As of March 31st, 2016):
Until March 2016, GK invested an amount of BDT 44.02 million equivalent to USD 564,000 to 244 Nobin Udyoktas (Young Entrepreneurs) for their businesses those include fisheries, grocery shops, mechanical workshops, dairy firms, cow fattening, poultry, medicine shops, handicrafts, tailoring shop etc. There are more projects submitted by the Nobin Udyokta currently which are in the pipeline; funding for those projects will be released after thoroughly verification by GK. Through this project GK created direct employment opportunity for 370 unemployed youths.