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[Lagos]–In its quest to support under-served and intending entrepreneurs, the Bank of Industry (BoI) in partnership with First Bank and Afterschool Graduate Development Center (AGDC) will finance feasible and sustainable business ideas.

The partners intend to give one million entrepreneurs funds with a single digit interest rate as well as enhance their capacity for sustainable growth, The Guardian reports.

They also hope to create about five million jobs form the lending scheme.

The Acting Managing Director of the Bank of Industry (BoI), Waheed Olagunju, while speaking at the unveil of the partnership in Lagos, yesterday,s ais the bank was partnering with the development banks to ensure that the funds get to right people who then achieve desired impact designed under the programme’s objective.

Olagunju explain that the lending scheme has terms and conditions that have been streamlined to improve access to the funds and remove the bottlenecks entrepreneurs have been experiencing in order to get funds.

In her own statement, the Chairman of First Bank of Nigeria, Mrs. Ibukun Awosika noted the level of youths unemployment and social ills arising from the situation need quick intervention.

She said: “Right now, we are at the point of building the future of the nation and when you have an environment where 65 per cent of your able-bodied young people ‎or where a large part of your population are out of work, you should not be able to sleep. We need to think of growing businesses in the future. So our commitment to this initiative is first to support nation building, support transforming the lives of that is so critical to our nation building, build new generation of businesses that will be our customers in the future.

“For any country in the world to achieve economic growth, it must prioritise developmental efforts towards small businesses. Small businesses represent about 60 per cent of the economy and also the largest employer of jobs in the country.

“Our long term goal is a target of about 5 million jobs to be created which will believe will be substantial enough to create some impact. If we all do our part, we will find that the cumulative effect of our contributions will change our country and move it forward as we desire.

The Executive Director of AGDC, Ms. Funmi Afternoon explained the center’s partnership  BoI will ensure that business models are re-designed with emerging trends for improved efficiency and profitability.

She added that micro and small businesses can access loans as low as N250,000 for new businesses and N500,000 for an existing enterprise with a tenor of one year.

Copyright 2017 The Page. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to as the source.



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