Saturday, March 12, 2005

Focus discussion group at SBGFC

FDG at SB Corp Posted by Hello

Last friday, I attended an FDG at the SBGFC office. About three years ago, I visited the same place but it was still SB Corp. Apparently after that they merged with the Guarantee Fund Corp so now they have a longer, harder to recall name - SBGFC :)

The FDG was requested since apparently the lending group was not familiar on how to evalute loans from ICT groups, particularly software companies.

As a lender (although I didnt really disclose this aspect to them) I did understand the sitatuation of both parties.

The IT group were confused on the procedures if not exasperated. The lender was not familar on what particular reqts to ask (besides the usual).

It seems from the discussion that many of the small IT entreps do not have Financial Statements and were not aware that what they have were assets.

When they were asked, some said they didnt have anything to put in their financial statements! Little did they realize that the programs they created are one of their major assets.

Some in the audience asked the SB officer what the reqts are and how long the process will take. The usual answer is it depends :)

I was too embarrassed to give my opinion but at one point I really had to. The same scenario sometimes happens in the bank.

I believe the consumer must know the process in evaluation, some policies such as what is the minimum income required because once aware they will know if they will pre qualify or not. Why bother then if you know its quite impossible to secure that loan. It will be a good guide so that the budding entrep will try to work for that stage where he maybe approved for that elusive loan.

That was a worthy project of Commissioner Dondi Mapa. I hope there will be more of such continuing dialogues to help the small and medium entrepreneurs.

1 comment:

Mike Abundo said...

Commissioner Mapa also mentioned the need for local market educsation on the value of quality IT services, and the need to build a referral network among local SMITEs.

Having worked in software project acquisition, I've had to face companies that had a hard time seeing the value of robust software development methodologies. I've also run into SMITEs who couldn't take on projects because they couldn't find other SMITEs to outsource parts of those projects to. Market education and referral networks would ease both those situations.