The Managing Director of Fidelity Bank Plc, Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo has pledged greater support for customers of the bank at the Balogun Business Association (BBA) and the Auto Spare Parts and Machinery Dealers Association (ASPAMDA), located at the trade fair complex in Lagos.
Okonkwo, while speaking with journalists, said the bank does not only serve the corporate class, but also the middle and lower class of the market.
“We do not only serve the corporate end of the market, we also serve the middle and the lower class of the market. We are very strong in SME’s. Most of these people are SME’s. They are the engine block of commerce and trade in the country,” Okonkwo said.
The CEO, who was at the market to interact and get first-hand information added, “we simply came here to connect with our customer. Fidelity Bank as you know does not only serve the corporate people, it also serves the middle and the lower class of the market.
“We are very strong in the SMEs and most of the people here are SMEs, because they are the engine hub of trade and commerce in this country and in line with our customer Week Forum Calendar yearly, we do this occasionally.”
He disclosed that the bank recently entered into a partnership with the African Development Bank on SMEs support fund.
“We have signed a $50 million SMEs support fund with African Development Bank. Thirty per cent of this will be going to female entrepreneurs. You have a huge numbers of female entrepreneurs in this market, so it is more than just a coincidence that we are here today to connect with our customers and know how we can serve them better. Fidelity Bank is a strong supporter of SMEs, most of them are accessing funds at nine per cent, under various intervention schemes and for those who do not qualify for single digit loans, they borrow at commercial rate but as much as possible we try to make sure we provide single digit loans for these customers through various windows available,” the bank CEO told the traders.
Also, the Executive Director, Lagos and South-west of the bank, Nneka Onyeali Ikpe, said the bank was poised to build the capacity of women entrepreneurs for greater accountability. On his part, the General Manager, Operations of the bank, Martin’s Izuogbe said Fidelity Bank had been very supportive to traders, especially in the area of foreign exchange transactions.
He said through the mediation of online banking, traders could make transfers online from the comfort of their office. Chief Tony Obih, President, Balogun Business Association, Aspanda, appealed to the bank to assist them in the building the entrance and exit gate to the complex and the acquisition of a security van for the complex.
In his response, Okonkwo said: “We will help to build the gates immediately and make provision for the security van before the end of the year. Fidelity bank will sponsor the rally twice every year. We will meet with the leadership of the association and see how we can support the novelty football match.”