SMEDAN, Sterling Bank launch N5bn loan scheme for small businesses

Alex Omenye
Alex Omenye

The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria and Sterling Bank Ltd. have launched Databanc, a N5 billion program to help small enterprises bridge financial gaps.

This was disclosed on Monday by SMEDAN’s at the event themed “Building with Data: Promoting Economic Growth through Data-Driven Insights,” according to Nairametrics.

The program, which aims to improve access to single-digit interest loans for Nano, Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises was launched in Lagos.

The SMEDAN’s Lagos State Manager, Kole-Dawodu, stated that financial mechanism is intended to provide targeted support to small firms, improving their access to markets and the resources they require for entrepreneurship.

The project also intends to increase Nigeria’s export potential by providing reliable data that will encourage the growth and sustainability of nano companies.

He explained that SMEs have long experienced barriers to financial assistance, which this effort aims to solve.

He said, “Now this platform would provide accurate data on nano, micro and small businesses in Nigeria while facilitating the requisite business support for these businesses.

“It is important to have the support of business membership organisations to help encourage members to go on the platform and register to foster data-driven insights.”

Meanwhile, the Director General of SMEDAN, Mr. Charles Odii stressed the importance of data for the agency’s ability to make informed economic decisions and promote the small company ecosystem.

He noted that as the driving factor behind well-being of the SME’s, SMEDAN will continue to bridge the gap between the government and small companies.

He said, “One thing we have observed is that businesses are not responding or taking advantage of the various interventions out there for them.

“Databanc as a platform would help build products’ knowledge about small businesses and it is very important for entrepreneurs to be aware of this to help grow their businesses.”

In her remarks, the Head of SME Products at Sterling Bank Ltd., Mrs. Bolanle Tyson stated that Databanc is a N5 billion single-digit rate loan initiative aimed at making funding more accessible to nano and micro firms.

She explained that Databanc is a structured channel for receiving money without the need for human intervention, and it is available to enterprises with a tax identity number and registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission.

The platform offers loans ranging from N250,000 to N2,500,000 for a one-year period.

She said, “The platform has a unique promoter ID, unique business ID generated for each business owner with seamless onboarding experience to provide exclusive business development and support initiatives generated through SMEDAN.

“It makes it easier to track businesses and provide creative solutions to foster business growth and sustainability by unlocking businesses’ potential with the SMEDAN N5bn loan program for success.”

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