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60,000 SMEs Benefit From Diamond Bank’s N200bn Loans

The bank has granted about N200 billion loans to 60,000 small and medium-scale Enterprise under its BusinessXpress account

Joy Onyemaechi

The regional Manager of Diamond Bank Plc Ibadan Mr. Oluropo Olanrewaju says the bank has granted about N200 billion loans to 60,000 small and mediumscale Enterprise under its BusinessXpress account.

Olanrewaju made this known at the 50th edition of the bank’s seminar held in Ibadan for operators of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises. He said the seminar had provided stakeholders with the requisite knowledge and necessary skills to help them to expand their businesses. Olanrewaju said, “The seminars are very important for our strategic objective of helping small businesses grow.

In 2009, we launched the BusinessXpress account the first of its kind which not only offered collateral free loans to the SME operators but also charged negligible COT. However, we realized that providing funds to the SMEs was just the first step. There was also the need to equip them with skills and knowledge to manage and grow their businesses so we started the seminars in 2010.

Diamond Bank’s spokesman Ayona Trimnell said that the seminar was the bank’s customized training initiative aimed at building and strengthening capacity among new as well as established business owners. He also said that the training was in line with the bank’s policy to develop a productive capacity that could compete on the global scale. “The bank is not just eager to provide funds for operators, we are also passionate about building the capacity that could boost economic production and provide employment at the micro small and medium scale subsector”.

According to Diamond Bank Plc webpage the company began as a private limited liability company on March 21, 1991 (the company was incorporated on December 20, 1990). Ten years later, in February 2001, it became a universal bank. In January 2005, following a highly successful Private Placement share offer which substantially raised the Bank’s equity base, Diamond Bank became a public limited company. In May 2005, the Bank was listed on The Nigerian STOCK EXCHANGE. Moreover, in January 2008, Diamond Bank’s Global Depositary Reciepts (GDR) was listed on the Professional Securities Market of the London Stock Exchange. The first bank in Africa to record that feat.

Today, Diamond Bank is one of the leading banks in Nigeria respected for its excellent service delivery, driven by innovation and operating on the most advanced banking technology platform in the market. Diamond Bank has over the years leveraged on its underlying resilience to grow its asset base and to successfully retain its key business relationships. And like a diamond, our strength makes us even more valued and valuable. Diamond Bank has won several awards including the prestigious “Nigerian Bank of the Year, 2009”, the “Most Improved Bank of the Year, 2007” and “Best Bank in Mergers & Acquisition, 2006” all by the ThisDay Annual Awards.

We have retained excellent banking relationships with a number of well-known international banks, allowing us to provide a bouquet of world class banking services to suit the business needs of our clients. These international banking partners include Citibank; HSBC Bank; ANZ Banking Group; ING BHF Bank AG; Standard Chartered Bank; Belgolaise Bank S.A; Deutsche Bank; Commerzbank; and Nordea Bank Plc.

In 2008, and to ensure we grow with the needs of our customers, we streamlined our operations into three distinct strategic business segments: Retail banking, Corporate Banking, and Public sector.

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