Money  

How financial institutions are keying into agric projects

According to recent estimates by the United Nations, Nigeria’s population currently stands at about 203 million. This massive population, coupled with the ongoing closure of the country’s land borders with its West African neighbours to forestall the illegal importation of basic goods like food, presents a huge window of opportunity for entrepreneurs operating in the country’s agricultural value chain.
 
But financial institutions are taking advantage of the sector’s opportunities and funding interventions by the Central Bank of Nigeria, to deepen their participation through various product offerings, as well increase credit portfolios.
 
For Fidelity Bank, agribusiness, that is, the commercial activities that revolve around the production, processing, marketing and distribution of food commodities, holds the key to unlocking the economic prosperity of the country.
 
“Not only does it have the potential to absorb millions of Nigerians from the labour market and keep them gainfully employed, but it can also help the country develop food sufficiency,” the bank said in a notice to customers of the bank.
 


Besides, it has initiated and sustained discourse on survival tips for small businesses, using successful entrepreneurs it has financed to explain their strategies under the weekly Fidelity SME Forum on Inspiration 92.3 FM.
 
Already scheduled to share insights on the outlook and prospects for the agribusiness sector in Nigeria in 2020, yesterday, was the Chief Executive Officer of Streetnomics, Gospel Obele.
 
Streetnomics is a market research company that delivers smart and customised local-fit solutions that will help clients understand their markets and customers.
 
Obele has led Streetnomics in collaborations with organisations/governments like the Anambra State Government, the Ford Foundation and the Partnership for Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND). 
 
He was on the programme to shed light on the challenges, trends and opportunities in the agribusiness sector in Nigeria in 2020 particularly as they relate to MSMEs.
 
He was joined by Omobolanle Gbayike, an agricultural entrepreneur and the founder of Anike Edibles.
 
Anike Edibles is a company that specialises in the production, packaging and distribution of additives-and-preservatives-free local Nigerian snacks.
 
The company emerged as one of the winners of the maiden edition of the Small Business Saturday Competition, organised in November 2019, by Fidelity Bank, to appreciate and empower small businesses making laudable impact in their communities.
 
Omobolanle will share insights on how she intends to tap into the opportunities that the agribusiness sector presents in Nigeria in 2020 and beyond.

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