One of the main problems for small and medium-sized entrepreneurs is access to finance.
According to Ekaterine Parulava, the founder of Kopeshoni, a company that produces candied vegetables, loan interest rate is so high that expanding the business is a significant challenge for small-sized enterprises.
"Access to finance is a big challenge, and when donor organizations fund and help you to set up an enterprise, it is very good. But then there is the challenge of accessing finance to grow your business. Communication with banks is difficult for small enterprises, the loan interest rate is very high. There are many circumstances that make bank loans more expensive. The situation is similar in microfinance organizations, so it makes no sense to produce with such finances and then make a profit," Parulava said.
Company "Kopeshoni" is based in Georgia and produces candied vegetable, chocolate glazed candied vegetables and natural dried vegetables. The company has been operating in the market since 2019. In addition, "Kopeshoni" brought honey to the European market last year. According to Ekaterine Parulava, 120 tons of honey were exported to Europe.
"I think that this year the volume of honey exports to the EU market will increase to at least 200 tons, because honey producers are trying to produce pure and natural honey, which will not prevent its honey from entering the European market," she added.
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