The Lusaka Securities Exchange (LuSE) has launched the LuSE Gem Portal, an innovative digital platform principally purposed to provide Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) with access to capital for investment into growing their businesses.
LuSE Chairperson Kayula Siame said the Lusaka Securities Exchange in collaboration with its partners is pleased to introduce the portal, an initiative admitted to and currently testing under the capital markets regulatory sandbox framework.
Speaking during the launch of the LuSE Gem Portal for SMEs, Siame said the portal digitally identifies, evaluates and enables the urgent provision of financing to qualifying SMEs.
Siame noted that in its continued efforts to make a positive and effective contribution to the growth of the national economy, LuSE has in accordance with its strategic plan continued to implement initiatives aimed at energizing the private sector’s productivity and supporting government programmes.
She explained that in providing SMEs with this digital platform, LuSE is keeping in stride with trending global digital transformation that is leading to the integration of digital technology into all areas of business and is fundamentally transforming how businesses operate and deliver value to their customers.
Siame added that accordingly, a key LuSE objective is to facilitate the mobilization of and access to the much-needed investment capital for both large corporates and small and medium sized enterprises in order to ease and sustain their operations.
She said financial support for the productive sectors of the economy largely populated by SMEs is vital for the health of the general economy noting that during and after the current Covid-19 outbreak, is an even more pressing matter requiring urgent attention.
Siame mentioned that the gem portal is particularly relevant in today’s difficult times, as an effective means of providing relief against the disruptive effects of Covid-19 on the national economy and in particular its impact on SMEs.
She noted that it is the purpose of the portal to enable SMEs to shore up their capacity to rebuild and continue in business during and in the immediate aftermath of the Covid-19 crisis.
Siame added that through the portal, all SMEs dedicated to the local production of equipment, facilities, accessories and services in healthcare, food and agriculture will be aided by United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNDCF) in meeting the expected rise in demand for such resources by an ever-growing population.
“As a securities exchange, LuSE is continually pursuing listings and in this regard LuSE recognized as far back as 2015, the necessity of broadening the opportunity to list investors, high net worth individuals who have not yet joined us, to come on board and partner with us on the gem portal and avail funding to SMEs”, she said.