Ecobank empowers small businesses, partners AUDA-NEPAD on MSME academy

Managing Director, Ecobank Nigeria, Patrick Akinwuntan, has pledged the bank’s support for small businesses operating in the country.

He said that the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises sub-sector remains the most affected by COVID-19 and needs support in the revamping of the nation’s economy.

Akinwuntan, who was speaking at the virtual launch of the first Pan-African MSME Academy in Lagos on Thursday, maintained that MSMEs were the drivers of post-COVID-19 economic recovery for Nigeria.

He charged players in the sub-sector to take advantage of technology, financial services and support from the government to drive the survival and growth of their businesses.

According to him, the MSME Academy is an initiative of the African Union Development Agency/New Partnership for Africa Development in partnership with the Ecobank Group.

The academy, he explained, provides easy access to practical training and resources on financing opportunities in various countries, how to build a digital presence for businesses and how to adapt business operations in the era of COVID-19.

His words, “We have been helping them with capacity building; providing simple and easy access to loans in various sectors, including agriculture, creative industry, healthcare and commerce among others.”

Others, he continued, are access to markets via e-commerce solutions and simple but robust digital platforms for collections and payments.

“We have also provided a channel to enable MSMEs open various accounts via self-service on our webpage. I encourage all MSMEs in the country to avail themselves of this opportunity to grow their business,” he said.

Director, Programme Delivery and Coordination, AUDA-NEPAD, Amin explained e Adoum, explained that the MSME Academy would build the capacities of MSMEs across Africa through a combination of relevant content library, a network of institutions specialized in MSME support such as incubators and accelerators, and a community of peers, mentors, and advisors.

He said that the key objectives of the academy were to radically expand access to finance by aggregating smaller financial institutions such as micro-credit institutions and credit unions with access to micro-enterprises, standardising their processes, and building trust in their capabilities.

“The MSME Digital Platform is a one-stop-shop for all MSMEs across Africa to access all these three programmes, which jointly address MSMEs’ challenges with access to capacity building, markets, and capital,” he.

Get in Touch


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Related Articles