Home Corporate News Why We Are Seeking Digital Empowerment For MSMEs – Wema Bank

Why We Are Seeking Digital Empowerment For MSMEs – Wema Bank

Wema Bank

Wema Bank, the pioneer of Africa’s first fully digital bank, ALAT, has charged stakeholders to prioritise digital empowerment for MSMEs as a measure for championing a sustainable MSME ecosystem in Nigeria.

The charge was made at the International MSMEs Day and MSME Awards Night 2024; a two-fold event organised by the Federal Government through the Office of the Vice President in commemoration of World MSME Day 2024 recently in Abuja.

At the event themed ‘Call to action: Provision of sustainable single-digit loans for MSMEs’, and featured entities, including Wema Bank, who brainstormed and proffered financial solutions to provide affordable loans and funding for MSMEs.

The Chief Executive Officer of Wema Bank, Moruf Oseni, represented by the bank’s Executive Director of Retail and Digital Business, Tunde Mabawonku, emphasised the pressing need to prioritise technology and digital empowerment to complement capacity development, financial empowerment, and collaborative efforts, towards building a supportive ecosystem for MSMEs to thrive.

He said, “At Wema Bank, our approach embodies the saying, ‘Give a man fish, he will come back but teach a man to fish, he will learn to fend for himself and others’. Technology and digital are the future, and intelligence is here to stay. What we are doing for these MSMEs is beyond providing the finances they need.

“We are also focusing on empowering them with relevant and transferrable digital skills to ensure they are not left behind in this digital evolution. What are the skills they need to sell in this fast-growing digital world? To operate effectively? To compete? To maximise the resources at their disposal? These are the questions that drive us at Wema Bank”, he said.

According to Oseni, the goal is digital empowerment for scale and to maximise the bank’s impact.

“We continue to partner with several esteemed bodies and institutions across the world, from banks to agencies, regulatory organisations, etc. Collaboration for us is continuous, from small alliances that allow us to empower smaller businesses through significant platforms within their ecosystem to bigger partnerships like the FGN-ALAT Digital Skillnovation Programme.”

“We will continue to combine efforts and pool resources where ideal to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, provide financial support and other resources that these businesses need and empower them to skillfully utilise the resources available to them for maximum impact and growth,” Mabawonku concluded.

Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises Day is celebrated globally to raise awareness of the tremendous contributions of enterprises to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Credit: punchng.com

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