Ecobank, EDC graduate SMEs operators, award grants

ECOBANKEcobank Nigeria in partnership with the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) of the Pan-Atlantic University has trained and extended grants worth millions of naira to five budding Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) operators in the country.

The programme, tagged “Ecobank New Venture Initiative (ENVI), is an innovative business training and education scheme, in collaboration with Ecobank SME Club and Pan Atlantic University’s enterprise centre.

The five selected SME entrepreneurs, known as ENVI Fellows are Olufemi Adenekan of Daily Fresh Farms; James Onyebuchi of Ojames Footwears; Winifred Obazeh of Asa Organics; Ifeoluwa Olatayo of Soupah Kitchen Limited; and Adegboyega Adesida of Charms Horizon International Farms Limited.

The beneficiaries were enrolled for a one year training and mentorship with EDC, leading to the award of the highly sought Certificate in Entrepreneurial Management at EDC, the premier SME focused training centre of the Pan- Atlantic University.

The grant was awarded midway into the training so as to monitor a real life growth in their businesses over the one year mentorship with EDC.

The Business Executive, Business Banking, Ecobank Nigeria, Kingsley Umadia, while speaking at the presentation of grants in Lagos, said the massive support for small businesses by the bank is in line with its philosophy that recognizes the SME sub-sector as the engine room of the nation’s economic growth.

According to him, “the EMVI initiative is part of our plans to help grow small businesses. Apart from capacity building, we want to see these businesses grow hence the financial support. I believe this will further deepen Ecobank brand in the SME sector in Nigeria”.

The Head of SME/Value Chain, Ecobank Nigeria, Sunkami Olowo, explained that the programme is geared towards developing the capacity of entrepreneurs, thereby creating sustainability in their business and also growing their bottom line.

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