Top Banks Partner to Fund SMEs
The African Development Bank (“AfDB”) and KCB Bank Kenya Limited (“KCB”) have signed a Sh 10 billion (USD 100 million) Line of Credit (“LOC”) Agreement, to be used for lending to corporate businesses, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
This LOC will provide much-needed liquidity support to businesses in infrastructure, energy and manufacturing, particularly value-addition.
The LOC will further support population segments like the youth, effectively serving a dual purpose of enhancing job creation, as well as facilitating financial access to businesses.
The funding according to the Mr. Gabriel Negatu, the Director General of AfDB’s, East Africa Regional Development and Business Delivery Office is expected to bolster growth of the Kenyan economy.
“The economy enjoys a unique feature, where both the corporate segment and the established SMEs drive economic growth and are also critical in generation of employment, enhancing output diversification, developing indigenous entrepreneurship and forging trade ties not just in the region but globally”, he said , during the signing agreement.
Negatu added that availability of requisitely priced funds at matching tenors, is therefore a key ingredient towards assisting these enterprises to thrive sustainability and eventually contribute towards economic development.
KCB Group CEO, and MD Joshua Oigara said the strategic partnership between the two institutions reflects their continued commitment to finance projects in agriculture and food security, renewable energy, SMEs, as well as youth segment.
“This collaboration will enable KCB to continue serving its clients in various business segments, as well as play a crucial role in contributing towards creation of employment among the youth,” Mr. Oigara said.
He added that the funding will go a long way in supporting the bank’s interventions, geared towards achieving the economic transformation of Kenya, in line with the Government’s Big Four Agenda.
The funding line is expected to further strengthen KCB’s catalytic role in Kenya’s economy as a financial services enabler.
KCB has a long history of driving East Africa economic agenda and is optimistic about the region’s future potential, in the area of entrepreneurship, financial inclusion, innovation and supporting regional legacy projects to drive national development and economic prosperity.
By Wangari Ndirangu