Port Moresby, Samoa, Tuesday, March 22nd 2022 – The Pacific Green Entrepreneurs Network (PGEN) held a Graduation Ceremony for its first cohort of Papua New Guinean green enterprises in which 17 enterprises graduated from the Pacific Greenpreneurs Incubator program, a 3-year regional program funded by the Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) and implemented in partnership by Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) and Emstret Space (E-Space). The inaugural Pacific Greenpreneurs Incubator program ran from October 2021 to February 2022, with 20 early-stage green enterprises from Papua New Guinea (PNG) participating in local workshops, regional training, mentoring, coaching, and networking.
The Graduation Ceremony took place as a blended event, in which the in-person event was held at E-Space which was attended by those in Port Moresby while attendees from other parts of Papua New Guinea (PNG) and the Pacific region joined virtually. The Ceremony showcased and celebrated the achievements and growth of Papua New Guinean Incubator program participants, coaches, mentors and others involved in the program.
The Guest of Honour at the ceremony were Mr. William Lakain of Climate Change & Development Authority and Mr. Dominic Sikakau from Bank of Papua New Guinea who gave remarks and congratulated the graduates and mentors while handing out certificates and awards.
Mr. Dominic Sikakau advised “Graduates put to good use what you have learnt and help others with the knowledge you have gained from the program”. “Government is supportive of GGGI and QFFD’s PGEN focus in supporting green job creation and their contributions to addressing the barriers to green enterprise growth and building PNG’s entrepreneurial ecosystem”, said Mr Lakain.
Also delivering remarks were Mr. Sakiusa Tuisolia from GGGI, Ms. Vani Nades from Emstret Space and Mr. John Pora from SME Corporation, Ms. Anne Shirley on behalf of the graduates.
Acknowledging the funding partner, Qatar Fund for Development, GGGI Country Representative for PNG, Mr. Sakiusa Tuisolia, said “We are grateful that QFFD recognized the potential and importance of such green entrepreneurship programs to deal with both Building Back Better and climate change adaptation – and welcomed GGGI’s proposal at a time when the Pacific is suffering from job losses due to COVID and ever-increasing climate extreme events”
In her remarks, Ms. Vani Nades of Emstret Space, mentioned, “We have witnessed amazing Green Entrepreneurs of PNG and through the program they have learnt so much and have gained confidence, more importantly the lean canvas model that has helped them to look within their business and understand their business better and the actions they need to take to build their business forward. We are inspired and that give us the more reasons to have this partnership with GGGI to help our local businesses grow, develop and scale”.
The graduation ceremony also featured the awarding of seed grant funding of USD 5,000 each to 6 PNG winners of the business plan competition (for a total of USD 30,000 or approximately PGK 105,000 in awards) to invest in growing their businesses and were also issued with Certificates of Award. The winners are Anne-Shirley Korave of Queenpads Products Limited, Esther Sione of Te’hine Trend, Ezekiel Dujambi of LitFuel, Martha Joylyne Raka of Sere J Pacific, Max Mata Pumina of Agricop Enterprises Ltd, Rebecca Kyakas of Wabag Waste Management Ltd.
The graduation event concluded with networking and connections between green entrepreneurs and guests from PNG and beyond.
The Papua New Guinean Greenpreneurs graduates are part of the regional Pacific Greenpreneurs alumni, comprised of 39 early-stage green enterprises who have completed the program in Fiji, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Vanuatu.
Applications for the 2022 Incubator and Accelerator programs will be open in coming months. For more information on the program, visit www.pacificgreenpreneurs.com