The Small Business Corporation (SB Corp) forged a partnership with the University of the Philippines – Los Baños (UPLB) to help boost an inclusive and integrated entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystem for Filipino entrepreneurs through the MSME Finance Institute at the State University’s campus in Los Baños, Laguna. The MSME Finance institute housed at the UPLB Center for Agribusiness Center for Entrepreneurship (UPLB-ACE) will serve as a knowledge center for MSMEs.
The institute will serve as venue for providing entrepreneurs continuous access to training programs, technology, knowledge and information, research and development network, and infrastructure. Throughout different phases of the enterprise, appropriate funding will also be made available in the form of loans or equity financing.
Under the agreement, SB Corp will provide financial institutions lending to MSMEs with capacity building programs on risk-based lending technology and MSMEs with financial education; access to industry linkages through DTI’s network; equity financing facility; low-cost lending through the Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso (P3) Program.
“With the state university’s ability to provide a wide array of services such as infrastructure, expertise, knowledge and technology to startup and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), the partnership would produce very good results,” SB Corp. President and CEO Ma. Luna Cacanando said.
Cacanando added that financing access and mechanism will bring the products of research and development closer to the market and facilitate technology commercialization through business startup models.
The SB Corp.-UPLB partnership is anchored on the i3s Strategy or Inclusive, Innovation and Industrial Strategy, which aims to build a strong government-academe-industry collaboration that includes innovation and entrepreneurship and human resource development.
At the SB Corp-UPLB MOA ceremonial signing and facility inauguration are UPLB Technology Transfer and Business development Office Director Glen Baticados; Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Management Services Group Undersecretary Ireneo Vizmonte, SB Corp President and CEO Ma. Luna Cacanando, UPLB Vice Chancellor for Planning and Development Marish S. Madlangbayan, Ph.D.; Dean College of Economics And Management Isabelita Pabuayon and UPLB Department of Agribusiness Management and Entrepreneurship Director Normito Zapata Jr.