Barclays dishes out $11.2m for SMEs

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BARCLAYS Bank Zambia has given Focus Financial Services Limited (FFS) a loan facility of US$11.2 million for on-lending to the Small and Medium Entrepreneurs (SMEs).
FFS is a non-banking financial services company that provides short term working capital finance to SMEs with a requirement for tangible collateral.

Barclays logo bigBarclays Bank Zambia managing director Saviour Chibiya said the facility extended to Focus Financial Services was a strong testimony of the importance that the bank attaches to supporting the growth of small businesses which are key drivers of economic growth.
The loan facility given to FFS is in line with the bank’s strategy of supporting the growth of the SMEs through business segment.

In this structured deal, the two organisations will provide more than 150 SMEs with an opportunity to access short-term working capital finance for invoice discounting, bridge and order finance.
“The success we celebrate today with Focus Financial Services is a reflection of the common vision that our organisations have towards supporting the growth of this important sector of our economy.

“Both organisations recognise the pivotal role SMEs, as the largest employers in the economy, can play to raise the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP),” he said in a statement issued in Lusaka yesterday.
Mr Chibiya said as a strategic partner to Government’s efforts of enhancing financial inclusion and was proud to provide the loan facility that would impact more than 150 small businesses.
This will help to boost the growth of the economy.

He said that Barclays would continue to support the development of key sectors of the country in an effort to enhance Zambia’s economic performance.
“With deep rooted local expertise, coverage and unmatched global and regional leveraging capabilities, the bank is well positioned as a partner for development,” Mr Chibiya said.

FFS group chief executive Solomon Ngwenya expressed his confidence in the partnership with Barclays.
“We are heartened that Barclays, a world renowned and long-standing bank in the Zambian economy is reinforcing the confidence Focus has in the SME sector. We know this partnership will not just contribute to growth, but also to the long-term sustainability of the sector that we are passionate about,” Mr Ngwenya said.

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