Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Fidelity Unveils Banking Service to Support SMEs

 Fidelity Bank Plc yesterday launched an initiative tagged the: ‘Fidelity Managed SMEs Business’, in line with its commitment to the growth of small businesses in the country.
The bank also disclosed plans to commence a national radio programme aimed at encouraging small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs).
Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Fidelity Bank, Mr. Reginald Ihejiahi, who briefed the media in Lagos, said the initiatives would help to address the challenges affecting small businesses in the country. These, according to him, would also tackle the high mortality ratio experienced by SMEs in the country.
Ihejiahi said with the initiative, his bank would help to guide small businesses in their efforts to penetrate the market by providing advisory support and enhanced capacity building programmes that would aid the survival of their businesses.
He explained: “Most times, small businesses feel access to capital is a major challenge but that is not the reality as there are avenues for funding. But, many of the SMEs lack the exposure to drive them through the necessary value chain. Each business has its own future and to make this a reality, a lot of things need to be done.
“As a bank, we have concluded plans to focus on managed SMEs, those with commitments. We are looking at trying to convert opportunities to success. We are planning to build the next generation of SMEs in Nigeria. They are the driving force of every economy and that target market should not be taken for granted”, he added.
In his remark, the Executive Director, Lagos and South West, Fidelity Bank, Mr. IK Mbagwu, said: “We believe the SMEs are the gateway to economic development. Developments usually take place by having a strong SMEs sector. It helps to generate employment in any economy. That is a major reason for doing this and we also want to let people know that Fidelity Bank has capacity and interest in this area.”
The bank’s Division Head, Managed SMEs and Consumer Sales Force, Ken Opara, while unveiling the business explained that the bank’s approach to the scheme would be geared towards providing advisory support and catering for the mass SMEs.
Opara added: “The focused radio programme will be launched in a couple of days and anchored by Martin Odogie, one of our SMEs experts. Through this effort, we hope to position the bank as an attraction point for SMEs’ incubation. The capacity building programme would be done in collaboration with other agencies.”

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