Diamond Bank raises stake in entrepreneurial support
As part of its resolve to promote capacity building in Nigeria, Diamond Bank has announced plans roll out the sixth edition of Building Entrepreneurs Today (BET) 20 programme, aimed at providing training and financial support to local entrepreneur to grow their businesses.
Under the initiative, the bank is to train 50 budding entrepreneurs over a period of six months after which top five is awarded N 3,000,000 grants for businesses expansion.
Speaking at a press conference, the Group Managing Director, Diamond Bank, Uzoma Dozie, explained that the bank is focusing on three sectors which includes; agriculture, health and education, noting that providing training and financial support for entrepreneurs in these sectors would impact the economy significantly.
To expand the scope of the programme, the Diamond Bank boss explained that the bank is targeting 10,000 applications this year compared to 5,000 last years.
Dozie explained that the initiative is in collaboration with Enterprise Development Centre of the Pan Atlantic University.
He sees massive opportunity in agriculture following the naira devaluation and the dwindling revenue occasioned by persistent drop in oil prices.
Uzoma pledged the bank’s committed to building local entrepreneurs, adding that the initiative has contributed to the pool of skill in small and medium scale entrepreneurs and sustained wealth creation in the country.
Also speaking at the occasion, Peter Bankole from Enterprise Development Center, said that by the end of this year, the bank would have registered a total of 10,000 participants and N90 million in grant under the initiative.
“I have not seen too much consistency when it comes to supporting small businesses but in this bank, we started with right ideas which metamorphosed into BET”, Bankole said.
Also speaking at the event, the Head, Emerging Businesses of the bank, Njideka Esomeju said “ the whole idea of BET is empowerment, ensuring we move people to the next level. We take application from all over the country. Last year we had about 5,000 applicants.
“ This year we are expecting about 10,000 applications. We are focusing on agriculture, health sector and education. We need to make sure our schools are better. We need to make sure our health facilities are better and we need to make sure we produce enough food to eat.
“ To enhance the growth of MSMEs in Nigeria. In this year’s edition, according her, five people are going to emerge winners. And we are given out five million to each of the five winners.”