Estimated reading time: 3 minutes
The Nigerian government has attempted for many years to assist the growth of SMEs in the nation through the APEX Bank, a number of programs such as the anchor borrowers program and the Bank of Industry Grant, among other programs. Even though the program may have had some impact, many SMEs continue to lack access to low-interest, long-term loans. Despite the gloomy realities and challenges that SMEs face, there are still some opportunities.
Attention To What Works.
“You don’t need any special skills to focus on what isn’t working but the reality is it takes time to pay attention to what works”. Tunde Obadero, the CEO of Zitra Investment tells the crew of Joadre as we sat with him in Lagos for a one-on-one Interview available in our App.
No Collateral Loan Initiative For Nigerian SME
The no collateral initiative is a product of Zitra Investment, a one-stop shop for financial services. SMEs and individuals who would typically be unable to get credit facilities at commercial banks will now have access to finance. According to the company’s CEO in an interview with Joadre, the company’s mission is to empower SMEs in Africa by facilitating easy access to capital. Tunde says, “Zitra’s target audience are people with no collateral to provide to a typical Nigerian bank in order to secure a loan.” Watch the full Interview on the APP.
Acknowledging the difficulty in Accessing Bank Loan
In the interview, Tunde Obadero advocated that the Nigerian financial landscape be made more democratic. “Many people have great ideas but lack funding in the form of grants or loans.” Unfortunately, when bank terms and restrictions are excessively onerous, people and SMEs are susceptible to loan sharks. If SMEs in Nigeria currently account for 96% of all businesses, 84% of all jobs, and 48% of the country’s GDP, then a concentrated effort to expand that sector will benefit both SMEs and the entire country. Everyone identifies with the issue of financial access, I’m sure. Some individuals could even find it more relatable, though. “There is a lady who hawks bread around Surulere, but always with insufficient funds to purchase bread from the bakery. What exactly does she do? She takes out a loan from a loan shark in order to receive N10,000 from him …”
Call for Global Partners
Tunde is not shy to say that concerted efforts are required for this program to saturate the entire continent and be sustainable. There, he asked for a global partnership to address the problems SMEs in Nigeria are facing. “One of the things we are looking at as well is a global partnership with entities who have the capital for social entrepreneurship. They may not understand Nigerian terrain but we will assist with that” we have a full video interview with Tunde Obadero on the JoadreTribe app.
At Joadre, we provide you with information to grow your ideas and where you may get funds. For more business-empowering delights, download the Tribe App.