The Managing Director of Access Bank Ghana PLC, Mr. Olumide Olatunji has indicated that the Bank will be receiving funds from Development Bank of Ghana (DBG) for on-lending to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as long-term loans.
This has been made possible because of the partnership between DBG and the commercial banks.
Speaking on the development in an interview, Mr Olatunji said, “Our holistic interventions are also evident in the products we offer SMEs and such products have been made available digitally. Additionally, the Bank has partnered with various stakeholders to ensure that funds are readily available to SMEs, all in a bid to support the growth of the sector”.
On the back of the partnership with DBG, Access Bank, he said, aimed to improve on what it currently offered in terms of products, and other offerings to its SME client base, thereby making a greater impact in the sector.
According to Mr Olatunji, “DBG is providing Access Bank with long-term financing that will be made available to our customers who qualify under the criteria that have been set by DBG”.
He also added that through this partnership, Access Bank would be able to scale-up significantly in terms of credit creation to support DBG’s aspiration to make credit available to Ghanaians and to Ghanaian businesses operating in our environment.
“Prior to this, what we had seen was working capital facilities that were usually between 60 days to three years, but now DBG is making credit facilities available for a longer tenure and at a cheaper cost of borrowing,” MrOlatunji noted
Access Bank plans to leverage the partnership with DBG to continuously support the Bank’s aspiration for SMEs.
Through its network of branches and offices across the country, as well as its digital platforms, the bank’s clients and potential clients are encouraged to start the process to seek funding for their businesses.
Speaking on the relevance of DBG, MrOlatunji said, “Development Bank of Ghana, is extremely relevant to the macro-economic stability of Ghana with the one billion dollars seed fund to banks. This makes collaboration with commercial banks very timely and very relevant to the market within which we operate.”
“The SME sector has seen an appreciable level of support from commercial banks, especially with Access Bank. DBG’s reinforcement seeks to make financing available for longer tenures and of course, provide cheaper forms of financing to the relevant sectors that can continue to add value to the economy of Ghana,” he said.
He said, “The support will not only be about financing, but also about training and capacity building; ensuring that banks provide the necessary intermediation that is necessary for credit creation for any economy to flourish.”
Access Bank he said was committed to adding value to the economy and one of the ways it measures its contribution is through the amount of credit it deploys into the market, particularly to SMEs.
“This is so because Access Bank considers SMEs as a very strategic pillar to the growth of the economy as they contribute over 70 percent to GDP as well as create over 80 percent of employment opportunities,” he said.
BY KINGSLEY ASARE