The Bahamas Entrepreneurial Venture Fund has welcomed a ‘one time’ $5 million capital injection in addition to the annual $1 million subvention which its vice-chairman Edison Sumner said will go a long way to helping more local businesses seeking financing.
The Bahamas Entrepreneurial Venture Fund is a venture capital firm that primarily considers seed and early stage investments. The BEVF provides loans and equity financing for Bahamian entrepreneurs. The Government has pledged a one time $5 million capital injection into the Fund.
Edison Sumner, also the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation’s chief executive said: “What is happening now and we had this discussion leading into the budget; there is going to be a one time $5 million capital injection into the Fund and that is going to be in addition to the annual subvention into the fund of $1 million. We are going to see coming into the fund this year a onetime payment of $5million and that will able to help us address the backlog of applications we have had and also expand the portfolio of the fund by being able to invest in a lot more businesses.”
Finance Minister K Peter Turnquest during his 2017/2018 Budget communication this week had reiterated an FNM campaign commitment to provide a $5 million capital infusion to the Venture Capital Fund. “The Government will continue to provide the annual investment of $1 million. Between what has already been provided by the previous administration and what’s coming in this fiscal term we will have just over $6 million in the fund. That is going to be a tremendous help to the fund. It has never happened before. We are excited about this new injection coming in,” said Mr Sumner.
Mr Sumner continued: “The backlog of applications is not very significant but when you think about the fact that we had to decline some applications because the funding wasn’t there and others were put on the reserve list until we could get the resources to invest in them, the additional funding is much welcomed. This also opens the door for more companies to come in and apply for funding.”