Canon Central and North Africa partners with Invest in Africa to provide training for SMEs in the printing sector in Ghana

Canon-logo smallCanon Central and North Africa (CCNA) a leader in imaging solutions, has signed a partnership agreement with Invest in Africa to launch Canon “Professional Print Excellence” programme to train and mentor small and medium (SME) sized printing companies in Ghana.

The “Professional Print Excellence” programme aims to improve the commercial and technical skills of 20 local professional printing SMEs in Ghana’s growing printing sector by providing them with focused training that will help them run large volumes of business and deliver world-class printing products and services.

“We look forward to working with Invest in Africa to provide SMEs in the printing sector in Ghana with the skills and knowledge they need to better serve their local customers. Canon is committed to empowering this region through the improvement of vocational skills and creation of job opportunities, and this is demonstrated through Canon’s partnership with Invest in Africa” commented Rokus van Iperen, President and CEO, Canon Europe, Middle East and Africa.

Mr Sam Brandful, Ghana Manager for Invest in Africa also indicated that “the Professional Print Excellence training programme sets the stage for building the capacity of the selected SMEs in the printing sector to help position them appropriately to be able to increase competitiveness, drive revenue and provide them with a better chance of accessing finance using the African Partner Pool.”

As part of the partnership, Canon will provide specialised printing training for 20 SMEs from Q3 2016 to Q4 2016, followed by a mentorship programme in 2017, while Invest in Africa will provide training on business development and business management best practices. Participating SMEs will be able to obtain details of tenders from international companies in Ghana via Invest in Africa’s ‘Africa Partner Pool’, with the ultimate objective of winning more tenders than they would have been able to do without the training.

“Professional Print Excellence” programme was established in response to a study carried out by Millward Brown for Canon Europe to understand the professional printing industry in Ghana. The study found that some corporate organisations are often using print providers in foreign countries for their print requirements.

The research identified that 96% of companies believe business in Ghana will grow in the next three to five years. 64% of surveyed companies said they could be persuaded to have more material printed within Ghana if Printing Quality improved.

Roman Troedthandl, Managing Director, CCNA, said: “In-house printing departments are virtually non-existent for corporations in Ghana. Despite the teething challenges hindering business in the country, growth expectation in the near future is high for the printing industry. In their quest to use more local printers, corporations are looking for improved print quality and delivery times. We are confident that with our training, we can start to help SMEs to be more efficient, timely and cost-effective.”

The programme is part of Canon’s Miraisha Sustainability programme which is aimed at building the capacity and skills of people in the African countries in which it operates. It has been inspired by ‘Kyosei’ the company’s corporate philosophy which embodies the ideal of living and working together for the common good.

Participating SMEs will be invited to join Invest in Africa’s African Partner Pool (APP), Ghana’s first cross-sector online business platform that connects larger international and Ghanaian companies to local business across sectors. The APP aims to increase the visibility and credibility of Ghanaian SMEs and support international and domestic companies who want maximise their local supply chains quicker and more cost effectively thorough its search functionality.