Business Incubation in Uganda, Services, Processes and Incubatee Perceptions- A case study
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Purpose-This paper examines the nature of services and processes of business incubation. Its specific objectives are to establish the nature of services offered by business incubation centers in Uganda, examine the incubation process and to establish the perception of business incu- batees about business incubation services using a case of FinAfrica a private social enterprise. Methodology-This paper presents findings from one incubation center FinAfrica as a case study. Ethnographic design is adopted while observation and interview methods are used to collect data. Results-Key services offered by FinAfrica incubation center include entrepreneurial training, provision of office space, legal and accounting services, mentoring, coaching, entrepreneurial networks and general office administration. The centre has a unique business incubation model which starts with motivating people to start businesses, capacity building, business registration, and ends with graduation after attaining capability for self-sustainability. Incubatees perceive the services offered by the incubation centre as helpful through training, affordable office space, entrepreneurial ecosystem and opportunities for a lean startup. Implications- While this study does not offer statistical inferences for generalisation because of the qualitative design and single case, the exploration of FinAfrica provides insights about how Incubation centers need to plan for positive and sustainable entrepreneurial impact for startups. There is need for more Government and other development partners’ involvement in business incubation and post incubation support for competiveness and growth. Originality/value- This study provides insights about the key services offered in the incubation process and provides insights into the perceived benefits of business incubation. It also contributes to literature about business incubation with practical evidence from an emerging economy whose focus is on private sector development and innovation promotion.