FCMB is one of the banks which has continued to deepen its support to SMEs in Nigeria by disbursing over N3 billion to such businesses in the last 18 months. The development has led to an increase in the number of SME operators that have benefitted from the funding support of the bank across the country. The lender is one of the top participating banks appointed by the Central Bank of Nigeria to drive the N220 billion Development Fund instituted by the apex regulatory body to provide loans to SMEs.
It has been discovered that beyond the funding, FCMB has put in place, various initiatives and capacity building programmes that have fast-tracked the growth of SMEs, thereby up-scaling their contributions to the development of the country. Apart from training sessions organised for owners of SMEs, the Bank has brought its professional expertise closer to the people by having dedicated Loan Officers at some of its branches nationwide. These officers are trained and equipped to provide SMEs with the best and most effective advice and support. In addition, the Bank has established an empowerment programme, called Cluster Marketing, for operators of SMEs. The initiative was designed to enhance their financial, marketing and management skills. In the same vein, FCMB has continued to aggressively support women managed businesses in line with the MSME fund scheme by collaborating with women involved in SMEs for the provision of funding, sponsorship and advisory services. These interventions, the statement explained, are in line with the Bank’s value as a helpful bank committed to enhancing the growth and achievement of the personal and business aspirations of its customers and the nation in general. Speaking on the giant strides of FCMB in the MSMEs space, the Bank’s Divisional Head, Retail, Mr. Olu Akanmu, said, ‘’SMEs are the bedrock of any country’s economic development. It can hardly make good progress except the SMEs excel. Therefore, being a forward looking bank with the appropriate desire for growth, we have decided to provide this sector with maximum support’. He reiterated the commitment of First City Monument Bank (FCMB) to support its customers who are operating in the SMEs space to overcome the challenges they usually face, especially at the take-off stage, ‘’because we want to be part of their success story’’.
FEBRUARY 12, 2017