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DBN boosts MSMEs’ with N100 billion facility

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Managing Director, DBN, Tony Okpanachi


• Restrategises for regional operations
The Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN), has disbursed over N100 billion to some 95,000 businesses since it began operations in 2017, its Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Tony Okpanachi, has disclosed.Speaking at the weekend in Maiduguri, Borno State, he also disclosed that the Bank was devising new disbursement strategies for the North East, North West, and the South East of the country.

“In the current year, DBN has disbursed over N100billion to over 95,000 MSMEs, cutting across various sectors of the economy. About 70% of these loans went to women-owned/managed businesses, while 51% so far were disbursed to youth-owned businesses,” Okpanachi stated.

Speaking during the first DBN MSME Summit, he said: “A major challenge faced by the MSMEs is their inability to structure and put together a bankable business plan, which makes banks view them as high risk and therefore unwilling to finance them.”

To fix the problem and make MSMEs attractive to DBN’s participating financial institutions (PFIs), Okpanachi said that DBN’s “Chief Operating Officer will work with relevant departments within DBN to put together an immediate capacity building plan that will involve assembling a number of MSMEs in Borno State and making them go through an extensive capacity building programme.”

Recall that DBN commenced lending operations in November 2017, with two microfinance banks namely, LAPO and NPF, with a pilot loan amount of N200million to roughly 300 MSMEs. In 2018, the bank’s first full year of operation, it increased disbursements to about N30billion and reached 35,000 MSMEs in Nigeria.

Meanwhile, to build on its impressive track record, Okpanachi disclosed that DBN is deploying new strategies to boost the growing network of MSMEs that it is financing across the country, and extend its reach to underserved areas.
As part of this renewed focus, he added that DBN is taking several measures, including the expansion of its capacity building programmes in the North East, South East, and North West, which have witnessed comparatively lower rates of disbursement.

The objective is to boost the capacity of local entrepreneurs to meet its requirements and qualify for inclusion for DBN support.This is in line with the bank’s mandate to support the stimulation of diversified and inclusive growth, and alleviate specific financing constraints that hamper the growth of domestic production and commerce by providing targeted wholesale funding to fill identified enterprise financing gaps in the MSME segment.

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