Capital markets are avenues where savings and investments are channelled between the suppliers who have capital and those who are in need of capital.
To create room for Rwandan youths to participate in capital markets, the Rwanda Capital Markets Authority introduced the Capital Market University Challenge (CMUC) eight years ago.
The annual Capital Market University Challenge is aimed at exposing students to the capital market industry while instilling in them the culture of saving and investment through the capital market and preparing them as future investors and professionals of the capital market industry.
In the challenge, groups of university students compete for awards in both the quiz category and essay category and these cash prizes are in the form of securities listed at the Rwanda Stock Exchange (RSE) in the long run have helped students to save on the stock markets.
This has over the years seen young people learn to venture into smart saving and investment and exploring opportunities offered by the capital market products i.e. shares, bonds or any other product to be offered at the stock market.
One of them is Redempta Sangiza who registered as a group to take part in the 2017 Capital Market University Challenge while at the University of Rwanda-Huye campus.
“To participate in the challenge, we formed a group of six that had formed a saving club at campus so as to pave a way for creating our own jobs after graduation and it was an opportunity to boost our savings,” Sangiza said.
She contested in the essay category and emerged top, while other members in her group participated in the quiz category and they too also emerged the best.
The students (in her group) who contested in the essay category were awarded Rwf400, 000 which they saved through buying stock shares in I&M Bank that is listed at the Rwanda Stock Exchange (RSE), while those who competed in the quiz category were awarded Rwf700,000 which they also saved through acquisition of shares in Bank of Kigali listed on RSE.
This enabled the group of six to form company dubbed “Reliable Immense Company Ltd” that earns on the stocks but also provides practical professional training on computer programmes and software for capacity building to youth.
Sangiza says that the company is growing and they have got new shareholders though some shares have been sold to boost the business.
“In 2019, we sold shares in Bank of Kigali so as to get capital to boost the company’s operations. We are remained with shares in I&M Bank and the shares are still in the bank expecting to get dividends”
For others participants like Theogene Kubahoniyezu, the Capital Market University Challenge has opened his mind and opportunity in doing business as a group and as an individual.
“We work to boost our business (Reliable Immense Company Ltd), but I also managed to start my own stationery company worth over Rwf2 million thanks to dividends from capital market and that joint company,” Kubahoniyezu said.
Magnifique Migisha, the Capital Market Authority’s Public Relations Officer said that the Challenge has been able to attract youth participation and promote the saving culture among students.
“Through the capital market challenge we have been able to prepare youths as future investors and professionals of the capital market industry,” Migisha said.
Migisha encouraged students to invest collectively through saving clubs saying that CMA helps in building capacity among students to establish saving clubs, on how best to run their clubs.
The 2021 Challenge and COVID-19
Now in its eight edition, the University Challenge (CMUC is back in 2021 and registration is underway through the CMARwanda website and application http://investor.cma.rw/cmuc/login/index.php with a registration deadline set on May 21, 2021.
The competition framework will involve both a set of quizzes and a topic for essay writing, done online, aimed at increasing awareness and knowledge among students about the capital market industry and the variety of opportunities it offers.
Competition for the quiz category, which is divided into three rounds, will take place from May 25 to June 1.
In the essay category, all contestants will submit their final essays on June 2.
Individuals will compete in both quiz and essay categories after creating an account via http://investor.cma.rw/cmuc/login/index.php.
Due to COVID-19, this year’s test activities in the challenge will be automated and done digitally to prevent spreading the virus as a result of holding public gatherings as it has been previously.
The test activities have been automated and will therefore be carried through a web-based application accessible via http://investor.cma.rw.