CIBNBFC2018: Stakeholders harp on collective efforts to boost MSME Clusters in Nigeria

Stakeholders at the 11th edition of the annual banking and finance conference organized by the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, are calling for concerted efforts to build strategic clusters for SMEs in the country.

This was part of the main resolution of the business session 3 of the conference, which discussed “Harnessing the Value Adding Potentials at MSME in Income and Empowerment Generation”.

Chaired by the Managing Director of National Deposit Insurance Corporation, NDIC Alhaji Umar Ibrahim, it had a guest speaker Mrs Ibukun Awosika the Chairman of First Bank of Nigeria and seasoned panelists.

Mrs Awosika who was unavoidably absent due to earlier commitments gave a video presentation, where she made a strong case for SME clusters in the country.

According to her there must be deliberate structures in place to drive the entire value chain for SMEs in the country.

“We have opportunities to build SME clusters in Industries like fashion and entertainment which both have a huge value chain, to generate massive employment” she said.

Awosika stressed that from the financial services to the business registration process and down to infrastructure, the structures must be supported to enable their growth and development.

Giving his remarks the Director-General of the Small Medium Enterprise Development Agency of Nigeria, SMEDAN Dr Umaru Dikko Radda shared that Nigeria has 37 million MSMEs that are macro-based and account for 84% of the employment in Nigeria.

Speaking further he said SMEDAN remained focused on providing business development support for MSMEs and was working with micro-finance banks, to expand the “One Local Government One Product” initiative across the nation.

Mrs Ndidi Nwuneli the CEO of AACE Foods in her intervention harped on the need for collective efforts amongst the banks in achieving MSME development.

On his part Mr Emmanuel Ijewere, CEO Best Foods Limited appealed to the banking and finance community, to support the agric sector which provides immense opportunities to boost the economy.

Hon. Mohammed Abubakar Chairman, UMZA International Farms Limited, which has one of the largest rice mills in Africa believed policy sustainability was vital to enterprise development.

He said the processing segment in the Agric sector was a great opportunity for investments, while he believed the Bank of Agriculture must be reformed to allow the commercial banks, to have major controlling shares.

The business session 3 was the first of the final day of the 11th CIBN annual banking and finance conference.

Mrs Bashirat Odunewu represented the Chairman of First Bank at the event.

NSE Opens Registration for 5th Corporate Challenge to Fight Cancer

The Nigerian Stock Exchange (“The Exchange” or “NSE”) is pleased to announce that the 5th edition of the annual NSE Corporate Challenge, scheduled to take place in Lagos at 7:00a.m. on Saturday, September 15, 2018, at the Muri Okunola Park, Adeyemo Alakija Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, is open for registration.

Started in 2014, the NSE Corporate Challenge is a one-day competitive and fun-filled 5 kilometre walk, jog and run event, primarily designed to raise awareness on the early detection and funds to support the fight against cancer in Nigeria. . The day’s activities will also include dance, aerobics, music and entertainment. Winners in the various race categories will be recognized as part of an awards ceremony at the end of the race.

This year’s event will bring together participants from listed and non-listed companies, dealing member firms, non-commercial organizations such as Federal, State and Local Governments, Quasi-Governmental Organizations, Educational Institutions and Non-Governmental Organisations; as well as celebrities and other notable Nigerians to support the figh​t against cancer. Interested participants are encouraged to register online at www.nse.com.ng/corporatechallenge​ with a fee of N200,000, N400,000 and N500,000 per team of up to 5 members for dealing member firms, listed companies and non-listed companies/non-commercial organizations respectively.

Cancer epidemic in Nigeria is huge and is set to rise if urgent actions are not taken to raise awareness about the disease and to develop practical strategies to address the increasing cancer burden. Data from the ‘Rapid Assessment of the Prevention and Control of Cancer in Nigeria’ report by the Wellbeing Foundation Africa (WBFA), show that cancer is responsible for 72,000 deaths in Nigeria every year, with an estimated 102,000 new cases annually.

Reaffirming the commitment of The Nigerian Stock Exchange to fighting cancer, Mr. Bola Adeeko, Head, Shared Services Division, NSE, said, “The Exchange has been at the forefront of cancer awareness and advocacy for the provision of screening and treatment facilities. Our commitment is unwavering, as we will continue to use the NSE Corporate Challenge platform to create awareness and raise funds to win the race to erase cancer. This deliberate intervention is imperative because of the statistics of life claimed by cancer and the fact that one third of these cancers are actually treatable”.

“By leveraging our access to a vast network of employees and clients of our listed companies, dealing members and other stakeholders, we believe we can work together in scaling up access to cancer screening services for early detection of cancer and provision of treatment and palliative care services to diagnosed patients”.

“From past editions of the NSE Corporate Challenge, we have been able to raise N57,362,624 which is geared towards the purchase of MCCs. For the 2018 edition, we have received support from our list of growing sponsors, such as Dangote Group, StanbicIBTC, Union Bank, FCMB and Chellarams. No one should fight cancer alone, I therefore call on other institutions and individuals to support this cause with the goal of multiplying efforts ​to prevent avoidable deaths. Together, we truly can make cancer a distant memory for future generations”, said Adeeko.

The NSE Corporate Challenge which is now in its 5th year, has been highly successful, recording more than 2,035 runners from over 306 institutions, comprising c-suite level executives, top government officials and celebrities. Celebrities such as Ali Baba, MI Abaga, Burna Boy, Seyi Shay, Dolapo Oni-Sijuwade, Gideon Okeke, Debola Williams, Tina Mba, Simisola and Yung6ix amongst others, have at some point thrown their weight behind the NSE Corporate Challenge. The race has also enjoyed huge publicity from both our traditional and digital media partners.