What is the Youth Enterprises Equity Fund (YEEF)?
Are you between age 18 – 35 years, have an innovative business idea, have no collateral but require financing to get your project off the ground?
Well, your opportunity is here with the SLDB through the Youth Enterprises Equity Fund. The YEEF was conceptualized to bring young enterprising people within the main stream of economic and social development in Saint Lucia.
The YEFF is a source of Equity Financing and can invest up to a maximum of $50,000.00 into the business enterprise of successful applicants.
The YEEF is not a loan.
What You Need To Know To Get Started:
- At the time of application, the promoter (s) of the business (investee firm) must be between 18 and 35 years old;
- The investee firm must be a duly incorporated, registered, and licensed business entity;
- The promoter(s) must have undergone a recognized technical accredited training programme approved by the SLDB;
- The promoter(s) must have completed the business management training programme offered by an approved institution;
- Projects must be innovative and must create employment for at least 3 persons;
- Promoter should submit a workable business plan with all relevant details to assess the technical, economic and financial viability of the enterprise;
- The promoter (s) must be willing to present their proposal to the Bank’s internal project review committee for preliminary review.
Type of Investment
Investment in the firm shall be in the form of preference shares. In determining the contribution of the promoter(s) in the business entity, any grant funding obtained towards establishing the business and providing pre-operating services shall be valued and be regarded as part of the promoter’s equity.
- The promoters must sign the Shareholder Agreement accepting and committing to all the terms and conditions of the investment.
- The period of investment in the entity shall be for a period of no more than seven (7) years after which the Fund is expected to exit the Business.
The Fund shall exit from the enterprise by way of a share repurchase by the Investee Firm, sale to a mutually agreed investor, based on the greater of the book or market value of the shares, using recognized valuation methodologies; or listing on a recognized securities exchange (ECSE).
Purpose of the Fund
The YOUTH ENTERPRISE EQUITY FUND is a source of equity financing established to assist in providing start-up equity for young entrepreneurs. The fund has been incorporated as a tax-exempt Limited Liability Company under the Laws of Saint Lucia and is being managed and administered by the Saint Lucia Development Bank with other major investors as shareholders. Small investors will also be encouraged to participate in the fund.
The Fund is an open-ended Fund from which investors shall have the option to exit after a minimum period of seven years based on the calculation of the Net Asset Value (NAV) of the Fund.
It is envisaged that the product will be administered through partnership with, the Government of Saint Lucia (GOSL), other state Agencies such as Office of Private Sector Relations (OPSR), through its CLIMB programme, the National Insurance Corporation (NIC); the National Skills Development Center (NSDC), the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College (SALCC); and other investors and partners in the fund.