Ecobank Shines At DBN Awards, Bags Three Laurels
… Gets commendations from Stakeholders
Ecobank Nigeria won 3 prominent awards signifying its’ support for MSME’s in Nigeria at this year’s Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) Annual Service Ambassador Awards ceremony held in Lagos recently. The Bank bagged the following strategic awards which include: Platinum Service Ambassador; Bank with the Highest impact on Women Issues, and Bank with the Highest impact on MSMEs Accessing Credit for the first time.
The DBN Ambassadors Programme was designed to increase the sense of ownership among participating financial institutions, build capacity, increase on-lending to Micro, Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (MSMEs) and ultimately deepen financial inclusion in Nigeria. Ecobank is a participating financial institution in partnership with DBN to provide credit facilities, credit guarantee and technical support to MSMEs.
Receiving the awards at the event, Deputy Managing Director, Ecobank Nigeria, Carol Oyedeji said this a testament to the bank’s commitment to supporting and empowering women owned businesses and assisting small businesses to access loans conveniently at cheaper interest rates for the development of the overall MSME subsector. Ecobank had the highest volume and value of transactions in these award categories
She reiterated that, Ecobank remains a women-friendly bank with many initiatives and innovative products targeted at empowering and sustaining female entrepreneurs in Africa such as ‘Ellevate’ and ‘Ecobank Female Entrepreneurs Initiative (EFEI)’, which are designed to empower and support female entrepreneurs.
Mrs. Oyedeji noted that Ecobank recently signed a USD200 million risk-sharing agreement with African Guarantee Fund (AGF), a specialized pan-African guarantee provider, stressing that it is aimed at catalyzing economic growth and supporting entrepreneurial ventures – including women-owned SMEs on the continent. “Through this partnership, both organisations are taking bold steps to enhance green financing and gender financing. It would eliminate the rigorous and restrictive requirements for collateral, particularly hindering women-focused businesses’ access to credit.”
According to her, “ We have both financial and social empowerment initiatives for female entrepreneurs because we recognise women as the bedrock of most families and entrepreneurship in the society. We aim to eliminate the rigorous and restrictive requirements for collateral, hindering access to credit.”
In his welcome address, Managing Director, DBN, Tony Okpanachi saluted the awardees, stating that their collaboration and commitment is impacting positively on the sustainable growth of the MSME sub-sector of the economy.
According to him, “your unwavering commitment to forging a lasting impact on the MSMEs through our collaboration is a testament to your dedication to fueling sustainable growth. The true essence of the DBN Awards shines through a celebration of sustainable triumph, where today’s aspirations evolve into tomorrow’s achievements.”
He explained that the DBN leverages its partnership with Participating Financial Institutions (PFI) to provide relatively cheaper loans as well as capacity building initiatives to small businesses.
The Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) was conceived by the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) in collaboration with global development partners to address the major financing challenges facing Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria.
DBN’s objective is to alleviate financing constraints faced by MSMEs and small Corporates in Nigeria through the provision of financing and partial credit guarantees to eligible financial intermediaries on a market-conforming and fully financially sustainable basis.