In a bid to empower women operating in the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sectors of the Nigerian economy, Sterling Bank Plc has organised a capacity building to equip them with competencies required to run better businesses.
The programme was powered by ‘One-Woman’, the bank’s robust and exclusive value proposition for women. Commenting on the capacity building programme, the Head of Retail Sales, Sterling Bank Plc, Cosmas Uwaezuoke, was quoted in a statement to have said:
“The bank is committed to equipping female entrepreneurs with business skills and financial management competencies required to run better businesses. We are doing this because research shows that women own 41 percent of businesses in Nigeria. However, just about two percent of women entrepreneurs have access to finance, which are bank loans. To change this trend, we are teaching female entrepreneurs to enhance profitability through effective cash flow and working capital management.”
According to Uwaezuoke, a research conducted by Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access (EFInA) had indicated that women constitute about 47.5 per cent of Nigeria’s population. However, just 30 per cent of women have bank accounts even though it is estimated that there are more women doing businesses than men in the country.
“Research shows that women want convenient banking services, safety of funds, access to finance and capacity development as well as savings opportunities for their children.”
Uwaezuoke observed that it was against this background that Sterling Bank, one of the top five SME friendly banks in the country, created the ‘One Woman’ proposition to meet these important financial services needs of Nigerian women. Explaining the ‘One Woman’ value proposition, Chief Marketing Officer, Sterling Bank Plc, Mr. Henry Bassey said: It is a bouquet of value-added offerings which meets the financial, business and personal needs of Nigerian women, irrespective of their social status. The ‘One Woman’ value proposition also provides very strong platforms for women to support other women. Bassey disclosed that benefits of the ‘One Woman value proposition range from Sterling Maternal Medical Finance (SMMF) for women with medical conditions such as fibroid, customised debit cards that provide cardholders access to discounts for spas, makeover services and furniture/household items at select outlets.