Zenith, others move to promote made-in-aba goods
Apart from inadequate road infrastructure, lack of access to finance and market are the other challenges faced by the Aba fashion industry, comprising garment and finished leather clusters- shoe, belt, bag and trunk box makers.
The just-concluded ‘Enyimba Business Fair’—the maiden edition organised by Zenith Bank Plc, in conjunction with Virtual Xchange Group and the Abi a State Government— was aimed at showcasing the ingenuity of the people of the state and facilitating access and exposure to both national and international markets for ‘ made- in-aba products.
Adaora Umeoji , deputy managing director, Zenith Bank Plc, explained that the bank is contributing to the growth and development of small and medium enterprises ( SMES) by providing funding of up to N10million each to as many as 10,000 credible SMES at nine percent interest rate per annum through the Creative Industry Financing Initiative ( CFI) fund.
The bank will also create a platform for SMES in the state to showcase their products in the national and international markets as well as provide them with export finance facilities, which will help to promote the export of their products to the international market.
Umeoji, who was represented by Ifeanyi Dike, assistant general manager, Zenith Bank plc, said the bank will offer digital and e- business solutions to SMES, which would further reduce their cost of operations and ease of access to national and international markets.
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She explained that the bank’s plan for SME in Abia is in line with its retail focus and underscore s its commitment to the
Central Bank of Nigeria’s ( CBN) drive towards achieving financial inclusion and growth of real sector of the Nigerian economy.
“It is worthy of note that this fair is a brainchild of ‘ Style by Zenith’— a platform of Zenith Bank targeted at supporting and creating value for customers by focusing on various aspects of their lifestyle and businesses.
“Launched in 2018, the Style by Zenith platform, which holds annual fairs, conferences and seminars, health initiatives, musical concerts and a host of other activities, is also dedicated to empowering individual customers, entrepreneurs and SMES to achieve growth and greater levels of success in their businesses,” she said.
She thanked Governor Okezie Ikpeazu for his tremendous support in making the event possible. “Indeed your vision and acuity to create the Ministry of Sma l l and Medium Enterprises Development, amongst many other initiatives, which have led to the growth and development of SMES, who are today the mainstay of the state’s economy, has made Abia State the envy of its peers among the comity of states in the country.
“As a global brand and a clear leader in the Nigerian financial space with several firsts in the deployment of innovative products and solutions that ensure convenience, speed and safety of transactions, Zenith Bank has shaped and continues to influence critical aspects of development in Nigeria and has a knack for setting the pace and raising benchmarks.
“We are also widely recognised as a bank that is committed to creating value for its teeming customers, through our best-in-class service, which often exceeds customers’ expectations,“she stated.