And it’s signed! New partnership with the Ghanaian Government

 

And it’s signed! We’re very happy to announce that Brighter Investment and the Ghanaian government have decided to work together on improving accessibility to higher education in Ghana.

Dr. Mohammed Ibrahim Awal representing the Ghanaian government as the minister for Business Development and Thijs Mathot, CEO of Brighter Investment meeting in Vancouver to sign the agreement.

Dr. Mohammed Ibrahim Awal representing the Ghanaian government as the minister for Business Development and Thijs Mathot, CEO of Brighter Investment meeting in Vancouver to sign the agreement.

BACKGROUND - The Ghanaian government of President Nana Akufo-Addo has rolled out a program that makes senior high school free for all Ghanaian students. This has, over little more than two years, increased enrollment in senior high school from 308,000 students to 430,000 students. And although this rapid, and faster than expected growth is putting strains on the system, the government is committed to hiring the required extra teachers and solve the resulting problems. Together with a rethink of the curriculum, the country’s memorization-heavy curriculum is being updated to focus more on critical thinking and comprehension, the students that graduate high school and qualify for tertiary education is expected to increase by 50% over the next 5 years. To pay for this increased demand, the Ghanaian government is looking for private partners.

Brighter Investment is a Canadian social enterprise with a mission to remove financial barriers to higher education for students in developing countries. Despite the large social and financial return of higher education, every year 60 million high potential students graduate high school without a way of paying for higher education. Brighter Investment's scalable solution is simple: 1) we use our selection algorithm to select the students with the highest potential; 2) Investors support the education of diversified cohorts of students; 3) Mentors help students start a rewarding career that would otherwise have been out of reach; 4) Investors share in the created value in the form of a percentage of the graduates' income.

Students supported through this program now have jobs as engineers, medical specialists and scientists instead of street vendors or servers and have increased income 5X with their degrees. They are also 6X less likely to be unemployed and investor returns have shown to be attractive and predictable.

PURPOSE - The agreement between the Ghanaian government and Brighter Investment, based on the shared intention of enabling more brilliant yet needy students to access tertiary education across Ghana, will ultimately help Brighter Investment further improve the performance of its investments and reduce risk for investors. this in turn enables Brighter Investment to raise additional capital and expand the availability of funding for bright Ghanaian students.

The practical activities that will be deployed by Brighter Investment and the Ghanaian government under this agreement are described in the following two sections. Equally important is that, although Brighter Investment has always complied with consumer lending regulations in Ghana, its income sharing agreement model is now also officially accepted by the government.

Brighter Investment student graduating from the University of Mines and Technology in Tarkwa, Ghana.

Brighter Investment student graduating from the University of Mines and Technology in Tarkwa, Ghana.

ACTIVITIES BRIGHTER INVESTMENT - As part of the agreement, Brighter Investment will continue to expand its funding program in Ghana:

  1. Raise funds from private investors for the funding of students enrolled into the program.

  2. Recruit and select students and value creating degree programs that qualify for the program.  

  3. Distribute funds to students and education providers. 

  4. Brighter Investment is responsible for the collection of repayments from students when employed.

ACTIVITIES GHANAIAN GOVERNMENT - The government will support the Brighter Investment model by:

  1. Introducing the program at all Ghanaian Senior High Schools, Tertiary Institutions, District Educational Units and all relevant statutory educational stakeholders.

  2. Facilitate an introduction to the leadership of organisations interested in taking on students for industrial internship and possible employment opportunities.

  3. Enforce repayments through the Ministry of Finance and other State Agencies. tax records and pension savings will help locate students that have defaulted on their repayments.

  4. Through the West African Examination Council (WAEC) and the Ghana Education Service (GES) the government will provide access to the list of top-performing students in the country who may require financial assistance for higher education.

  5. The Ministry shall liaise with the National Service Secretariat to facilitate placement of brighter students in relevant employment organisations. National Service is a mandatory internship for university graduates and preferential placement can help securing employment after National Service.

  6. The government will collaborate with Brighter Investment on a National Tracer study on the graduates of all tertiary institutions to help Brighter Investment decide what other degrees to include in its program.

CONCLUSION - This support from the government will help Brighter Investment expand its program, improve outcomes and reduce defaults. All in all it will make its students a more attractive investment helping Brighter Investment raise additional funding to support more students. The future is bright!