What companies can apply to the VPO financial inclusion program?

Although there are no industry restrictions, the program is recommended for companies operating in the transformation and service sectors, with at least two years of operations, a minimum monthly sales average of US$5K and a financing need of between US$15K and US$50K.

 
The program gives preference to companies in the manufacturing and transformation sectors. In order to qualify, companies in the service or business sectors must add value to their consumable goods or demonstrate the potential to replicate their business in other geographic locations in order to grow.

 

In which countries is the Financial Inclusion Program available?

The VPO program is currently only being implemented in Nicaragua with a local bank, meaning only Nicaraguan entrepreneurs may apply. We are in the process of expanding the program to other locations in the region to provide more financing access to growing SMEs.

 

What are the financing conditions?

The credit approval is based on the client’s sales and cash flow, allowing less emphasis on guarantees. The amount of the loan is usually equal to 25% of the client’s annual sales, the payment fee is equal to 6% of their sales, the credit term is up to a maximum of 5 years and is amortized monthly or quarterly depending on the financial institution.

 
The loan has a variable rate, which is lower at the beginning and then increases annually by 2% starting the third year. The reason for the increase in the interest rate is to encourage the client to pay as soon as possible and graduate from the program as a traditional SME customer.

 

Why should I apply?

The VPO financial inclusion program is not a traditional financial product since in addition to being a financing designed to facilitate the growth of its participants, it is also accompanied by a business advisory process by Agora consultants, who have extensive experience in the development of competencies for business management thus providing participating entrepreneurs with the knowledge and tools necessary to stimulate their growth.

 

What does the business consulting process consist of?

The consulting process begins from the first moment of the application, giving candidates feedback on information preparation and the deliverables necessary to apply for financing. After the approval and disbursement of financing, entrepreneurs receive business advisory services from our Agora consultants through our modules:

 

  • Cash flow: Providing useful resources for understanding the structure of the business cash flow, understanding where the cash comes from and how it is used; determining the working capital of the business as well as understanding that cash flow decisions impact the ability to obtain funds to meet financial obligations.
  • Accounting: Through innovative methodologies, entrepreneurs are provided with practical tools to understand the basic concepts of Accounting and the accounting operating process as well as identify key information contained in financial reports.
  • Calculating my costs: Facilitates tools to entrepreneurs that allow them to know the different elements that make up the cost of their products, with the purpose of defining the final sales price of the products, knowing their break-even point and projecting a greater business profitability.
  • Market strategy: Provides entrepreneurs with the basic concepts needed to effectively manage the commercial aspects of their company with a central focus on the constant interactions they have with their customers and their customers needs.
  • How to increase my sales?: Helps entrepreneurs use practical tools to know and apply effective sales strategies and their buyers, and to apply effective negotiation techniques with their current and potential clients through the different proposed sales strategies.
  • Quality and continuous improvement: Provides entrepreneurs with the necessary tools to identify opportunities to improve their production and service systems, allowing them to execute their operations more efficiently and effectively with an approach based on continuous improvement.
  • Hygiene and safety: Helps participating entrepreneurs design strategies to mitigate occupational risks that allow them to convert their work spaces and operating processes into safer work environments with lower accident rates.
  • Planning the growth of my company: Provides entrepreneurs with the tools to identify the strategic initiatives and necessary resources to achieve the projected growth goals.
  • Risk management: Provides tools for managing risks that may affect the performance of the company by identifying and foreseeing actions to mitigate negative impacts on the business.
  • Managing human talent: Offers knowledge and techniques to manage human potential and the factors that enable its development; entrepreneurs will have acquired basic skills in the design, administration and evaluation of programs and procedures that allow the improvement of company productivity through the management of Human Talent.
  • Socially responsible management: Provides entrepreneurs with the tools to clearly understand the concept of Social Responsibility and the benefits of its implementation, as well as to include Social Responsibility in the business strategy of the company.
  • Transformational leadership: After the completion of this module, women entrepreneurs will be able to distinguish and apply skills and techniques to lead teams in an organization due to the development of individual and collective attitudes and values.

 

What is the application process?

To apply, contact our team via email: lflores@agora2030.org and klopez@agora2030.org. Or call the following numbers: (505) 85408992 and (505) 88668407. For more information, visit the following banking platform: https://bit.ly/2kGMBhd.

 

When is the application period for the program?

The application period for the VPO financial inclusion program is open with no deadline, thus the program can be applied to at any time of the year.

 

After finalizing the program, what are the next steps?

Once the program is finished, our already banked graduates have the opportunity to apply to other financial products that the bank offers to continue their growth. They will also be part of the Agora Partnerships alumni community, which will allow them to connect and apply to other opportunities present in our network.