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Bank committed to support growth of SME sector

Bank committed to support growth of SME sector

While the government is putting every effort in place to increase wealth creation opportunities among its people, Tanzanians are particularly becoming more and more creative at individual level in terms of income generation. And the scenario comes at an opportune time when the number of jobless university graduates reportedly roaming the streets approaches a crescendo. In fact the state of affairs leaves no doubt that Tanzania is grooming a new crop of educated men and women ready to take risks in the open business opportunities.

As one Joachim Masato, an IT entrepreneur puts it, Tanzanians are partying in new ways of making money in the once referred to as the informal sector; "You see it is easier to establish and manage a small business even in the rural setting. One has only to work on an idea and convert it into notes and coins," he says. But despite the positive strides made in the development of SMEs sector, Joachim feels that its full potential is yet to be tapped due to the many constraints including limited SME access to financial services.  He however notes that the competitive existence of banks and financial institutions in the country will at the end impact on the development of the SME sector.

Julian Alkaeli, another entrepreneur echoes the sentiments saying the competitive nature of our financial institutions has motivated a savings culture across Tanzania. She notes that new brands have opened shop while others are expanding across the country with a far reaching effect to the customer. She says: "I witnessed the EcoBank, a successful Pan-African Banking Group member that enjoys quality presence in 33 African countries, launch an enterprising six month customer outreaching drive duped 'Shinda BabKubwa na EcoBank' with the  intent to create awareness on how savings could improve any ones' living standards."  

Truly by the word, the EcoBank recent customer outreaching initiative went in line with the official launch of two high end banking products namely, Diaspora Banking and Advance Banking services as the financial institution increased its presence to five branches in Dar esSalaam and announced its expansion campaign to Mwanza and Arusha.

Julian points out that SMEs will extensively benefit from this initiative especially due to the fact that the sector is growing at an equally promising pace: "Savings is the secret behind financial discipline. It paves the way for a reliable economic growth because empowered individuals are able to implement business plans, a situation that would basically promote economic development at household level."

And according to Samuel Ayim, the bank's Executive Director, the campaign that targets professionals, individuals and SMEs would see participating parties take home prizes including the grand prize of a brand new Hyundai Tucson ix35 worth a whooping 65m at the December climax.

Ayim says: "We would like to invite all Tanzania to celebrate our two years of quality presence in the country through the launch of our 'Win Big with EcoBank' savings campaign. It is a six month initiative where we seek to motivate a savings culture but also increase our presence among Tanzanians. I would like to urge all Tanzania to join in this new motivation by opening an account with EcoBank and enjoy the multifaceted products offered by the bank."

Ayim says: "Our prospects are bright in terms of growth and we look to breakeven at the end of the year. With the 'Win Big with EcoBank' initiative, we would like to promote the SME growth in Tanzania by encouraging more saving from individuals and professionals."

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MORE than 125 billion cubic feet of natural gas ...

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Author: PAUL JOHN

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