FCMB Gets $50m to Meet Funding Needs of SMEs – A credit facility worth $50 million has been approved for First City Monument Bank (FCMB) by the African Development Bank (AfDB).
The loan is to allow the Nigerian lender to meet the funding needs of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) owned by females.
SMEs account for up to 80 per cent of employment in most African countries and women-empowered businesses typically face a considerable financing gap.
The Nigerian economy has been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and falling crude oil prices have had a ripple effect on the wider economy.
FCMB is a commercial bank in Nigeria with around 5 million customers and total assets of around $5 billion as of the end of 2020.
The funding package will enable the bank to support local enterprises and women-empowered businesses in the agribusiness, manufacturing, healthcare and renewable energy sectors.
A statement issued by AfDB disclosed that 30 per cent of credit facility, which is intended to mitigate effects of the challenging COVID-19 environment, is earmarked for underserved women-empowered businesses.
In addition, the FCMB will provide a technical assistance grant of $200,000 through its Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA) initiative supported by the Women Entrepreneurship Finance Initiative.
The grant will complement the loan by enabling FCMB to provide non-financial services, including training, and to strengthen its monitoring and reporting functions.
AFAWA aims to improve gender inclusivity by improving access to finance for women entrepreneurs. It also advances the bank’s 10-year strategy and is consistent with three of its High-5 strategic priorities: Industrialize Africa, Feed Africa, and Improve the Quality of Life for the People of Africa. It also aligns with the Nigeria Country Strategy Paper 2020-2024.
“The AfDB is pleased to support FCMB’s strategy to become a dominant player in addressing the funding needs of women-empowered and local enterprises,” said Stefan Nalletamby, the bank’s Director of Financial Sector Development.
“This project will extend valuable resources to critical but underserved segments during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with its adverse macroeconomic impacts,” Nalletamby added.