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Standard Chartered unveils partnership to build SMEs capacity

The Bank is targeting to loan more than Kshs 12 billion to SMEs to improve their capacity in Cash Management, Trade Finance and Technology/FILE

NAIROBI, Kenya, July 18 – Standard Chartered has launched a partnership that will see the Bank provide entrepreneurship and financial education skills to Small and Medium Enterprise while at the same time linking the businesses to trade opportunities on the Asian Trade corridor.

The Client Recognition Programme will target its clients in the Business Banking segment and will be run in conjunction with Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), Kenya Investment Authority (KenInvest) and Strathmore Business School.

“Through our partnership with Strathmore our Business Banking clients will attend capacity building training and workshops equipping them with skills needed to grow business. Through KAM our clients will have access to a series of advisory workshops addressing topical issues facing the SME sector and be able to leverage the Association’s strong networks in the manufacturing industry. Further, the partnership with Kenya Investment Authority will enable our clients enjoy greater access to local and international trade corridors,” said Mr. David Idoru, Head of Retail Banking Standard Chartered Bank.

Idoru said the Recognition Programme will be instrumental in closing the knowledge & skills gaps facing SMEs. The Bank’s clients will now enjoy up to 20% discount when enrolling for Entrepreneurship courses partners.

The Bank will also supplement the Strathmore Entrepreneurship curriculum to give a practical approach by way of Guest lectures. This will be complemented by International Study trips to Asia during which the Bank will facilitate Kenyan delegates to meet and network with SME counterparts in China, Malaysia and Singapore. The delegates will also be treated to interactive sessions covering market overview and business opportunities on the far-east trade corridor.

“Standard Chartered has strong historical links to the rest of the world especially Asia. We shall use these invaluable connections to build the profile and capacity of these entrepreneurs,” said Idoru.

The Business Banking Clients Recognition Program has been designed to bring together customers and give them an opportunity to engage and benefit from exposure to the Bank’s network in a bid to help them upscale and grow their businesses.

Last month Standard Chartered announced that it will increase funding to the SME sector by 30% this year. The Bank is targeting to loan more than Kshs 12 billion to SMEs to improve their capacity in Cash Management, Trade Finance and Technology. Standard Chartered is targeting SMEs with a minimum annual turnover of Kshs 10 million which have been in business for at least three years.

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