Business Support Unit for Start-Ups By IDAL. Next step is to create specialty clusters

Business Support Unit
for Start-Ups By IDAL
Next step is to create

specialty clusters

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The Investment and Development Authority in Lebanon (IDAL) will launch the Business Support Unit (BSU) in Beirut in late October. Another three units will open at later dates in Tripoli, Zahleh, and Saida.

The unit aims to support start-ups and entrepreneurs who have feasible projects and business models, and to provide them with free consultancy services.

The unit will help start-ups get the required loans from financial institutions. It will also guide them to the best practices for completing their paperwork in public administrations and ministries. The unit will help start-ups market their products in international markets. Marketing assistance could include visits to exhibitions abroad.

BSU will choose the start-ups from productive sectors, mainly the ICT and food industries.

The first Beirut center will be located in IDAL's offices. The unit will employ four staff at the start, as well as 12 coordinators from various ministries to help the start-ups.

IDAL allocated $100,000 for the unit for the initial phase.

IDAL has another project which will be submitted to the Cabinet for approval. It aims to create clusters of similar or complementary companies, each related to a sector and a geographic area. For instance, in regions that are well known for agriculture, a cluster of small farms could be established along with two small factories for dairy products. In areas that are famous for furniture, a cluster including small handicraft businesses and industrial facilities could be established.

The project aims to boost investment. It will be implemented in cooperation with the Central Bank and Kafalat and those interested can get soft loans to start their business.

One company will be established in each cluster to manage and market the products in the international market. The cluster will also include a showroom to display the produced goods.

The project could be implemented in partnership between the private and public sector.
Reported by Rania Ghanem
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Date Posted: Sep 20, 2017