Neema Mori, Ph.D., Department of Finance, University of Dar es Salaam Business School, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Research Fellow, Norwegian Centre For Microfinance Research (NOCMIR), University of Agder, Kristiansand, Norway. UDBS Building Wing A, P.O. Box 35046, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Tel.: +255767065698. E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


We investigated a sample of 3,098 randomly chosen youth-owned enterprises (YOEs) in Tanzania and studied their access to business development support (BDS) services. YOEs are defined as enterprises owned and run by young entrepreneurs, aged between sixteen and thirty-five, according to the Tanzanian definition of youth. We analyzed which BDS services affect the performance of YOEs in terms of (i) number of employees, (ii) whether the enterprise keeps financial records and (iii) the entrepreneurs’ perception of the performance of their enterprises. With the support of the resource-based view, we found that access to expert advice is positively associated with a YOE’s number of employees and their ability to keep financial records. We also found that access to business management training and entrepreneurship training positively influences financial record keeping and enterprises’ perceived performance. Overall, we conclude that the resources that young entrepreneurs obtain through their access to BDS services are crucial for their enterprises.

Keywords: youth, business development services, YOEs, Tanzania.