On November 21, 2019, Daffodil International University, in association with Venture Capital and Private Equity Association of Bangladesh (VCPEAB), has organized a policy dialogue where public and private entrepreneurship ecosystem stakeholders of Bangladesh were present to share their views.

The objectives of this event entitled “Investment Opportunities for Startups in Bangladesh- A Policy Dialogue with Ecosystem Stakeholders” was to bridge the gap and find out the probable solutions for startups. Moreover, the policymakers mandate the following issues:

  • Providing incentives to global investors by the government to invest their money in the country for bringing a positive impact.
  • Connecting the local investors with global investors.
  • Minimizing tax on the personal income who will invest in startups.
  • Creating an exit mechanism for global investors.
  • Make an Angel Investment law to create awareness and educate them

Moreover, the issue has been raised that one proposal from the VCPEAB and Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS) was sent to Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission to form a small-cap board to give funds to the startups.

It is to be mentioned here that, in 2009, the Government came up with alternative investment funds- venture capital fund, private equity fund, impact fund in Bangladesh.

The discussants who support the initiatives are composed of representatives of the following bodies and entities:

  • Md. Sirazul Islam, Executive Chairman, Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA), Prime Minister Office. The Chairman of BIDA is the Prime Minister of the Peoples Republic of Bangladesh.
  • Dr. Md. Sabur Khan, Chairman, Daffodil Family
  • Mr. Shameem Ahsan, Chairman, Venture Capital and Private Equity Association of Bangladesh (VCPEAB).
  • Mr. Zia U. Ahmed Ph.D., Chairman VIPB Asset Management Company Ltd.
  • Mr. Baybars Altuntas, Chairman, World Business Angel Investment Forum
  • Mr. Shawkat Hassain, Former Managing Director, BD Venture Limited.
  • Mr. Wali-ul-Maroof Matin, Co-founder & Managing Director, Maslin Capital Limited
  • Mr. Nirjhor Rahman, CEO, Bangladesh Angels

The list of entities was not only bound to the above-mentioned names but also many other board members of Venture capital firms, bankers, academicians and so on were present at the event too.

“Finding the new possibilities of convincing the rich people in the country on investing as it will be more flexible to reach an investment. And investment development is one of the ten initiatives of the Prime Minister. To support entrepreneurs, we need to connect global capital to local capital,” said Executive Chairman of BIDA.

Mr. Shameem Ahsan says “another big policy has been established that withdraws 2% tax duties from the fund of the fund managers which will give a boost to the investors.”

At the end, Sabur khan concludes the event by saying- education transformation is needed for the investors as well as startups.

As a part of the Global Entrepreneurship Week celebration, the GERN representative from DIU initiated this event to provide a platform for national-level advocacy from the advisory group. This will help to develop a legislative framework for investment opportunities in Bangladesh.

Asif Iqbal is teaching Entrepreneurship, Technopreneruship, and Marketing in the… About the author

Beauty Akter is Teaching Entrepreneurship at the Department of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, About the author