PwC Malta today launched a €1 million Start up Fund targeting people wishing to take up a career in entrepreneurship. The fund is being run in collaboration with the University of Malta and Times of Malta.

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat who visited the offices of PwC in Qormi to mark the launch of this fund, said that this initiative is very much in line with government’s plans to promote innovation. He said that government is currently reviewing a number of proposals including setting up venture capitals, even though by his own admission all previous attempts were unsuccessful.

Another initiative being considered is that advocated by Central Bank Governor Josef Bonnici who is in favour of setting up a development bank.  The prime minister said that there needs to be a safety net for those 15 percent who fail in their first attempt to set up a business.

Services that may be provided through this fund will include; assistance in the preparation of business plans; the raising of bank finance; the set up and registration of companies; tax matters; the design and implementation of the accounting and IT systems; the set up of employees share option schemes; and self training in financial management related areas.

As part of this fund, PwC will also be supporting Microsoft Malta by providing training and mentoring to entrepreneurs in the ICT sectors availing themselves of the facilities and resources offered at Microsoft Innovation Centre.

Kevin Valenzia, Territory Senior Partner at PwC said that by putting its business experience at the service of start ups, the company aims to ease the financial burden of new entrepreneurs as well as contribute for a more innovative economy.

The Business incubator currently being set up at University will be providing the necessary support infrastructure whereas the recently launched Centre for Entrepreneurship and Business Incubation will be offering specialised training.  University Rector Juanito Camilleri said that this fund is a perfect fit and complements the efforts being done by University in the area of entrepreneurship.

Malta Independent: http://www.independent.com.mt/articles/2013-06-17/news/pwc-launches-1-million-start-up-fund-1846149120/