The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) is partnering with Sterling Bank to provide a total of five billion naira in loans to MSMes.
The two organisations came together to sign the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), on Wednesday, November 22, at SMEDAN Corporate Headquarters in Idu, Abuja.
At the ceremony, the Director General of SMEDAN Mr. Charles Odii expressed gratitude to Sterling Bank for taking the bull by the horn in making affordable, accessible and available, funding for SMEs at a single digit interest. This he said is a milestone that must be commended.
In his response, the Managing Director/CEO of Sterling Bank; Mr. Abubakar Suleiman expressed optimism on this new arrangement while also stating the imperative for MSMEs to be able to keep their books, separate personal funds from business funds and obtain requisite knowledge required for business sustainability. He equally promised to work with SMEDAN in providing a robust platform for SME data in Nigeria, which will go a long way in ensuring the democratisation of access to finance for MSMEs.
MSMEs have been advised to visit www.smedan.gov.ng/smedansterling, to apply for the funds ranging from ₦250,000 to ₦2,500,000 depending on the status of the business records. Once repayment is concluded such MSMEs are qualified to take a higher sum to support business growth or expansion.
Mr Charles Odii appealed for the dissemination of the information on this fund to all the nooks and crannies of Nigeria. According to him, a panoramic view of previous funds provided by government has shown that many MSMEs are either not aware or do not know the procedures for applying. Finally, he reiterated the commitment of SMEDAN under his leadership to get more funds that are SME friendly as well as disseminate such information within the MSME ecosystem.