Fcmb Sme Accelerator Program To Empower 1 Million People In Nigeria
In a bold move to drive economic empowerment, First City Monument Bank (FCMB) has introduced the SME Accelerator Program aimed at empowering one million individuals across Nigeria. This initiative, launched in collaboration with SkillPaddy and industry experts, focuses on equipping startups and existing enterprises with the necessary skills and resources to innovate, explore new markets, and expedite growth.
Backed by a Technical Assistance grant of ₦284.7 million from Proparco and an additional ₦227 million from the African Development Bank (AfDB), FCMB is set to support SMEs, including women entrepreneurs and those in high-impact sectors like agriculture, renewable energy, and digital industries.
To inaugurate the program, FCMB disbursed ₦50 million in grants to 200 SMEs during the inaugural training session, held as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week 2023.
George Ogbonnaya, FCMB Bank’s Group Head of SME banking, emphasized the program’s commitment to nurturing businesses effectively. He underscored the bank’s aspiration to inspire Nigerians to pursue entrepreneurial dreams and build businesses capable of transforming the nation’s economy.
FCMB’s dedication to supporting women-led SMEs was highlighted, with a focus on mentorship and access to finance to empower these entrepreneurs.
Kunle Erinle, Founder and CEO of SkillPaddy, believes the partnership with FCMB will revolutionize SMEs by enhancing productivity and opening doors of opportunity for startups and existing businesses.
Oladimeji Olanrewaju, CEO of Sweet Indulgence by Bakhita, expressed gratitude for the opportunity provided by FCMB and looks forward to scaling up his business through the program
FCMB has a strong history of supporting SMEs, having extended ₦1.343 trillion in credit to over 98,000 SMEs across various sectors since 2018. This support has addressed funding gaps, expanded operations, boosted productivity, created jobs, and contributed significantly to Nigeria’s economic growth.
As a key supporter of SMEs in Nigeria, FCMB remains committed to fostering inclusive and sustainable growth by connecting people, capital, and markets.
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