The Liberian Enterprise Development Finance Company (LEDFC) is calling on smaller construction companies in the country to merge and form more formidable conglomerates in order to get bigger loans from banks, institutions, and investors.
The Loan Manager of Liberia Enterprise Development Finance Company (LEDFC), Mr. William Koon, said Liberians must evolve beyond small enterprises and family businesses. He said this older style of business prevented local construction companies from improving.
Mr. Koon expressed his belief that bigger companies could receive larger amounts of money as loans from institutions and investors.
He made the disclosure at a seminar intended to build the capacity of construction companies throughout Liberia as well as providing understanding of the benefits of loans.
He explained that two or three companies can merge and carry one name of registration; which could help obtain bigger loans to pre- finance contracts as done in many countries in the world.
According to Mr. Koon, the LEDFC has transacted with over 50 businesses in the construction contracts sector in the country based on the arrangement of these company to obtain loans from them.
Speaking to a cross section of journalists at the one day seminar for construction companies held at the Monrovia city hall on Wednesday February 5, 2014, Mr. Ofori Asomaning, Acting General Manager of LEDFC, said the issue of acquiring loans is based on the company having contracts and wanting to pre-finance the work.
According to Mr. Asomaning most of the construction companies lacked the financial capability to pre-finance construction work; which has over the years led to many of them losing contracts.
He explained that LEDFC was giving 10,000 to 1, ooo, ooo US dollars with an interest rate of 13 to 15% based on the agreement of the loan from loan officers as well as ensuring client satisfaction.
Also speaking was Mr. Richard Wiafe, who stated that it was important to focus on Liberian, owned businesses with 51% or more ownership with an experienced managerial staff for smooth loan cooperation and improvement.
He explained that Liberians needed to have a good business plan that would aid them in acquiring bigger contracts. It would also create an atmosphere for investors to work with contractors’ plans.
Mr. Wiafe stressed the need for Liberians to engage themselves in the process of workshops, seminars and other forms of training that would help in building the capacity of businesses as well as setting the way forward.