The Bank of Industry (BOI) is perfecting all documents pertaining to the release of the $500m Africa Development Bank (AfDB) Fund, and will soon make it available to industrialists, it has been announced. The announcement was made by the Chairman, Shareholders’ Committee of BOI Mohammed Kyari Dikwa in Abuja during the bank’s 53rd Annual General Meeting (AGM). According to him, the $500million credit line was facilitated by the Federal Government to boost the country’s industrial base, adding that “It is with the expectation to deepen the Bank’s credit delivery process that the Federal Government facilitated the approval of the $500 million Line of Credit from Africa Development Bank (AfDB) for BOI to utilize for the funding of the industrial sector at concessionary rate. “As soon as BOI complies with the disbursement processes which has reached an advanced stage, Nigerian industrialists will start benefiting from the incentive-backed facility.”
The Bank of Industry (BOI) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) on youth entrepreneurship to encourage self sufficiency among graduates and help entrench the culture of self-reliance and social responsibility on youths.
The Managing Director of the bank, Evelyn Oputu, at the signing ceremony explained that the bank was determined to drive the initiative and make a mark in the development of youths and the rural communities through the Village Renewal and SAED programmes, adding that it would give the needed support to any MDA that is willing to come up with initiatives that would develop Nigeria and its populace.
She noted that the signing of the MoU was basically to formalise and strengthen the partnership that started about ten months ago.
Oputu explained that a good number of Nigeria youths had ideas they wished to showcase but were in dilemma on how to go about bringing those ideas to laudable projects. According to her, “I had the passion to impact my community when I served, but I did not know how back then”.
She said that the level of work done in the NYSC skills acquisition centre had encouraged the bank to want to go into partnership with it, adding that the bank would not relent in its efforts to empower and equip youths in the urban cities as well as those dwelling in rural communities across the country.
“The quality of work done by corps members is amazing so we feel we were in a good position to add value to what NYSC is doing. We have always believed that Nigerians are relentless, but to harness these talents has always been the challenge.
“Given what NYSC have done with skill acquisition, we are sure that the bank can collaborate with the corps. We believe the young people have what it takes to change the lot of the country. We will be able to put hope in the young people and not only the rural dwellers alone.”
She added that BOI’s commitment to improving the value chain goes beyond the NYSC to cover its work with state governments, with 18 of them providing funds though the BOI to support small and medium scale enterprise development.
According to her: “We have MoU signed with 20 states government, with 18 of them giving us funds ranging from N100 million to N1 billion which we will lend to small businesses and the vulnerable group.”
Ms Oputu further said they approached the NYSC on the invitation of the director of SAED to participate in what they are doing. “We sent people and surprisingly the quality of products that came out of the corps members was amazing.”
Simon Ocheni, a corps member who was able to access a facility of N3.8m from the bank during his service year in 2012, said that he came up with a business idea of packaging Nigerian foods, starting with the packaging of garri, adding that he was able to set up a factory and he had never for one day thought of looking for job in any office.
Now with a factory in Lokoja, he advised serving corps members to leverage on the opportunity given by the bank and NYSC and take their eyes off the certificate they had acquired in their various institutions.
In his response, Director of the NYSC, Brigadier General Johnson Olawunmi said that the good vision the bank had towards the economic transformation of Nigeria had clearly shown that the country still had people who were committed to taking the country to the next level and giving hope to the youth who were the future of the country.
He said that the objectives of establishing NYSC of building up the youth and by extension the economy, give credence to the fact that Nigeria’s youth population, if given all the opportunities they require can attain any height they desired to attain.
The SAED, since inception, in 2012 has trained 245,000 corps members with only about one percent of them accessing funds to start up their business. The MOU is expected to boost the enthusiasm and interest demonstrated by corps members to develop skills for self-employment and contribute to the accelerated growth of the national economy.
The federal government, represented by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development,has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Bank of Industry (BoI) for the bank to manage the N4.3 billion cassava bread fund that would support small and medium enterprises (SMEs), master bakers and large industrial cassava flour mills.
The Bank of Industry (BOI) and Bank of Agriculture (BOA) are to manage disbursement of the N9.9billion cassava bread fund released by President Goodluck Jonathan, according to the Minister of Agriculture Dr. Akinwumi Adesina. N4.3 billion will be disbursed by the BOI to support Small and Medium Scale Enterprises SMEs, who are involved in cassava processing, while the BOA is to manage N2.4 billion of the fund in collaboration with 13 key private stakeholders, he said.
Adesina said: “It will be 50% grant 50% loan. And you will agree with me that this is a huge step forward in terms of supporting our farmers to produce more cassava.”
This is even as the Managing Director of the BoI, Ms Evelyn Oputu, who signed on behalf of the bank pledged that the bank would work closely with the stakeholders to ensure that the fund was properly utilised.
The MD said that the nation would save a lot of money in foreign exchange from the implementation of the federal government’s policy of 20% cassava substitution in bread and other confectioneries by the year 2014, and noted that the bank would continue to drive the nation’s agriculture transformation policy.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, who signed on behalf of the federal government, said Nigeria’s revenue from cassava production would increase exponentially, following how output has been doubled in the last one year to ensure the nation continues to retain its position as the largest producer of the crop in the world.
Adesina disclosed that a total of N1.5 billion has been set aside for the upgrade of the capacity of 35 existing small cassava flour mills in the country.
This support, according to the minister, would be provided in the form a 50 per cent loan and 50 per cent grant, while the BoI would provide a working capital of N425 billion as loans to SME cassava flour processors at single digit rate.
In line with its core mandate, the Bank of Industry (BoI) is poised to boost the creation of over 3.5 million jobs across the country through financial intermediation by 2015.
BoI’s Managing Director, Evelyn Oputu, who made this known at the third annual seminar for Trade & Investment Correspondents and Editors, at Abuja, said the new jobs would result from the bank’s funding of an estimated 3,000 entrepreneurs on a year-on-year basis. Oputu, who was represented by the bank’s Executive Director, Business Development, Waheed Olagunju, said its core mandate was to provide financial support for the establishment of large, medium and small projects, besides expansion, diversification and modernisation of existing enterprises and rehabilitation of ailing industries among others.
BoI, she assured, would always support the entrepreneurs to succeed in their various businesses by providing funds and technical advice.
It should be recalled that BoI was established in October 2001 following the reconstruction of the Nigerian Industrial Development Bank (NDIB) which had been in existence since 1964 as one of the oldest Development Finance Institution (DFI) in Nigeria.
“The bank’s vision is to be a leading self sustaining development finance institution operating under sound management and banking principles that would promote the emergence and development of a virile industrial sector in Nigeria.”
Barely two years after the Bank of Industry and the Gombe State Government jointly launched a N1 billion Micro Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund (MSME) which was soon after Alhaji Ibrahim Dankwambo emerged as the Governor of Gombe State in May 2011, the two development partners launched the second phase of the Scheme in April 2013 by increasing the size of the Fund to N3 billion.
The ceremony was a huge success as it was attended by all sections of the society including traditional rulers and current and potential beneficiaries. It also featured an exhibition of the products of the projects financed under Phase I. According to observers, the occasion marked a turning point in Gombe’s march to becoming an industrial hub in the North East.
In their remarks at the event, the highly enthused Governor Dankwambo and the Managing Director and CEO of BOI, Ms Evelyn Oputu, said they decided to effect the quantum leap in order to meet the ever rising enthusiasm for entrepreneurship in the state and because of the highly positive responses by the people of Gombe State to the programme which were both phenomenal and unprecedented.
Within eighteen months of its launch, application for loans in excess of N5.2 billion Naira were generated by 497 cooperative groups that engage solely in value addition activities.
The demand was five times more than the volume of the available resources. With the approval of 20% of the applications more than 12,000 direct and indirect jobs were created with potentials for many more. The impressive 100% recovery rate was also described as quite remarkable in that environment.
According to Governor, Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo, the matching fund was necessitated by the need to diversify the state’s economy, and to shift emphasis to the state’s strengths, and do a lot in the area of improving agriculture and boosting production of exportable commodities and products from the state. He canvassed for the support of the private sector by showing them the availability of credit and the opportunities available in the country, which will help them expand their skill, capacity, and the state’s economy. Tackling the concern of high youth unemployment was also a major objective of the state government, he said.
The commitment of the state to its development, the Governor said, has also been strengthened with the provision of mini-industrial centres for rice and groundnut clusters, its major agricultural exports, to give conducive atmosphere for MSMEs in this sector to thrive. These centres he went on, will address some of the structural problems which had constituted a stumbling block to the progress of MSMEs in the state.
In her own address, the Managing Director of the Bank of Industry, Ms. Evelyn Oputu, said the Bank had targeted Gombe State as a partner because of its potentials and tremendous natural resources. The state, she said, has all it takes to be at the forefront of agricultural and industrial revolution in the country. The Bank’s contribution to the matching fund was an attestation to this belief, which has since been adopted by the indigenes of the state, she added.
To ensure compliance with the scheme, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has set up a high powered monitoring team led by a former Senator U. Dukku to ensure the funds were used as intended.
Senator Umar Dukku, Head of the Monitoring Team for the BOI/Gombe State Fund commented that ninety-nine percent of the progress made is an improvement in the lives of the people of the state. Particularly in the area of employment, he said unemployment is being tackled and young people, who would have been used as thugs, are now off the streets.
Not only has the Scheme created an opportunity for positive engagement, it has also boosted the profile of the state, as the state is now being referred to as the industrial hub of the North East due to the upsurge in industrial and commercial activities. High patronage for the products like groundnut oil, rice, metal fabrications, print jobs, fertilisers by other states reflects the new dawn in the state.
Bank of Industry has consolidated its niche as a highly competent National Development Finance Institution with unique hands-on experience in the management of specialised development schemes and funds by co-launching a N2 billion Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Development Fund with the Government of Kano State. The ceremony which took place recently in Kano brought the volume of MSME Funds being managed on behalf of eighteen state governments to N19.3 billion.
The scheme which is targeted, mainly, at the development of existing and new Micro Small and Medium Enterprises in the state is expected to create new jobs and ultimate wealth.
Under the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) , BOI and the Kano State Government resolved to jointly contribute the sum of N1billion each for on lending to mainly businesses that have high employment generating potentials and value addition to local raw materials.
Speaking on the state’s decision to fund the scheme during the signing of the MOU in Kano, the State Governor, Dr. Rabiu Kwankwaso, declared that his government was determined to encourage the promotion of entrepreneurship and the growth of MSMEs especially those engaged in the processing of agricultural and solid mineral resources as well as manufacturing.
He explained that in this vein an Entrepreneurship Standard Committee had been set up to look into all loan applications, adding that the committee had a prominent entrepreneur, Mr. Mohammed Yakasai, as a member, among others.
The Governor assured the bank’s management and citizens of the state that his administration would facilitate loans to entrepreneurs wishing to access such facility in the state especially graduates of the 23 institutes established by the state government to train and sharpen the skills of budding entrepreneurs in various vocations through well structured capacity building programmes.
The Managing Director of BOI, Ms Evelyn Oputu, lauded the resolve of the Kano State Government to make the dream of budding entrepreneurs in the state a reality. She noted with regret the preponderance of moribund factories in the state as against what obtained 30 years ago, and urged the government to do more in the area of providing infrastructure in the state.
She also called on the governor to provide more land for farmers for the purpose of tomato cultivation, assuring that BOI would help to harness all efforts to ensure that more successes were recorded along the tomato value chain. The BOI CEO stated that the bank was determined to work closely with the 37 newly established micro finance banks in Kano towards supporting MSMEs. She added that the bank was also ready to work with the government and people of Kano State to harness the state’s huge agricultural potentials especially in the area of vegetable and leather production.
The Bank of Industry, the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria and the Industrial Training Fund are the major drivers of the recently launched National Enterprise Development Programme (NEDEP) that has been designed to create at least 3.5 million jobs across the country through the development of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector which is the engine of growth in most economies.
The new scheme being spearheaded by the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment (MITI) is aimed at harnessing the vast opportunities in the MSME sector to drive inclusive economic growth through skills acquisition, entrepreneurship training, business financing, employment generation as well as wealth creation. And in order to harmonise all SME development activities across the country and achieve maximum impact, the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment is promoting the establishment of SME Councils in all the thirty six states and the Ministry of Federal Capital Territory (MFCT). The SME Councils are structured to comprise relevant state government officials, those of the organised private sector and representatives of SME promotion, development and facilitation agencies.
While speaking at the stakeholders workshop held recently in Abuja, the Honourable Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mr Olusegun Aganga announced that the partnership between the Bank of Industry, SMEDAN and the ITF was the first of its kind in the country. The Minister added that he and his team were motivated by the belief that economic transformation and growth were only possible through focus on the MSME sector. And that MITI as well as other implementing agencies were being guided by similar enterprise development initiatives that have been successfully implemented in parts of Asia and Africa.
The Minister expressed optimism that a minimum of 3.5 million jobs can be created provided Nigerians are able to promote the required thousands of new micro enterprises and cooperatives and also expand and modernize existing ones between 2013 and 2015, in view of the country’s huge vibrant and youthful population as well as its coastal location and natural resource endowments. Mr Aganga noted that all the 774 Local Governments in the country have comparative advantages in terms of the raw materials (agricultural, solid minerals and petroleum resources) located in each of them. The economic potentials of the nation’s creative industries are also considerable especially sports, music, movies and fashion.
Commenting on the Bank of Industry’s leadership role in the design and implementation of NEDEP, BOI’s Managing Director and CEO, Ms Evelyn Oputu gave assurance that building on the experiences gained over the years in pursuit of their respective mandates, the Bank, SMEDAN and ITF shall initiate capacity building programmes in entrepreneurship and skills acquisition all over the country and assist those that come up with bankable proposals. She indicated that for these potentials to be actualized, the capacities of sizable number of Nigerians would have to be built rapidly in demand-driven ways. Ms Oputu concluded that BOI would work in close collaboration with BOI’s other domestic and foreign development partners in implementing NEDEP that holds considerable promise for the realization of Nigeria’s development aspirations.
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has signed two agreements for the provision of two sovereign-guaranteed multi-tranche Lines of Credits (LOCs) with the Bank of Industry (BOI) and the Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM). Under the programme that is designed to support export-oriented small and medium enterprises, boost job creation and diversify Nigeria’s economy, a $500 million Line of Credit was approved for the Bank of Industry while a $200 million Line of Credit was extended to the Nigerian Export-Import Bank.
While Dr. Ousmane Dore who is the African Development Bank’s Resident Representative in Nigeria signed for AfDB, the Managing Director and Chief Executive of the BOI, Ms Evelyn Oputu and Mr Roberts Orya, the Managing Director and Chief Executive of NEXIM signed on behalf of their respective institutions. The signing ceremony took place at the Bank of Industry’s Corporate Office in Abuja.
The two Lines of Credit include technical assistance packages to strengthen institutional capacity at both BOI and NEXIM as well as at their SME customers.
The facilities are meant to support the establishment, modernization and expansion of export-oriented small and medium enterprises’ (SMEs) that have high employment generation potentials. The lines of credit would also allow SME beneficiaries to be more competitive, scale up their operations and ultimately create more jobs in Nigeria. According to Dr Ousmane Dore of AfDB, the combined program will contribute to mobilize significant financial resources for Nigerian export-oriented SMEs, ultimately contributing to economic development, employment opportunities, foreign exchange and regional trade integration. BOI’s Managing Director and CEO, Ms Evelyn Oputu stated that the $500 million Line of Credit would enable BOI lend more support to the underserved and those at the bottom of the pyramid under its paradigm shift initiative. NEXIM’s Managing Director and CEO indicated that the facility would enhance the bank’s ability to support export based SMEs in line with its mandate.
BOI And The Enterprise Development Centre Of The Pan Atlantic University Conduct Training Programme For Executives Of Small Growing Businesses
One of the major challenges that has limited the access of small and medium-sized enterprises to credit facilities is their inability to present bankable proposals to financial institutions. Having recognised this, the Enterprise Development Centre of the Pan Atlantic University, Lagos in collaboration with the Bank of Industry organised a capacity building programme in Lagos for owners of small businesses with the theme, ”Developing Small Growing Businesses”.
The programme which had in attendance business executives and entrepreneurs was aimed at identifying funding constraints and how they could be over come.
While addressing participants, the Managing Director and CEO of BOI, Ms. Evelyn Oputu, regretted the difficulties most SMEs face in their quest to secure funding for their businesses. She attributed these mainly to the inability of many entrepreneurs to supply the information required by banks to process their loan applications. Speaking in the same vein, the former United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Ms Robin Sanders urged entrepreneurs to pay attention to details and gather enough information about funding agencies they intended to approach for support to enable them to answer questions that might arise and to produce needed documents.
In conclusion, Ms Oputu gave assurance that BOI would continue to support the SME sector, which, she stressed, was the engine of growth of most economies as the real sector had the potential of generating massive employment. This she explained was why BOI under its paradigm shift that was launched in 2006 dedicated 85% of its resources to funding of the SME sector.
Fourteen prospective investors from the United States of America recently visited Nigeria as part of an investment and trade mission tha t was jointly organised by the Nigerian Embassy in Washington DC, the Corporate Council on Africa (CCA) and the United States Government-owned Development Finance Institution, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC).
OPIC advances the foreign interests of U.S. businesses by helping them gain footholds in emerging markets. This it does mainly by providing finance, guarantees and political risk insurance.
During their visit, members of the US team met with their counterparts from Nigeria’s business community, relevant Ministers and State Commissioners as well as top management staff of the Bank of Industry.
The Managing Director and CEO of BOI, Ms Evelyn Oputu was the guest of honour at the unveiling of various exotic African head wears especially hats and caps made with traditional Adire (Tye & Dye), Ankara Batik, Kente and Aso-Oke fabrics produced by Messrs Crown Natures Limited, a BOI assisted indigenous promoted enterprise.
The company is one of the beneficiaries of the N100 billion Cotton Textile and Garment Fund (CTG) that BOI was appointed to manage in 2009.
The BOI boss made a very strong case for the patronage of the company’s exclusive products especially corporate organisations that spend billions importing caps for their promotional activities. She explained that by purchasing “made in Nigeria” goods, we are not only creating jobs but we are also reducing the country’s dependence on foreign goods and conserving our scarce foreign exchange.
The BOI facility has assisted the company in expanding its annual production capacity to 1.2 million caps. It currently employs 5000 workers and plans to capture 25% of the Nigerian market into which more than 50 million caps are imported yearly.
Crown Natures Nigeria Limited has mastered the skills for producing various kinds of headwear such as Baseball Caps, Polo Caps, Sunvisors, Bucket Hats, Special Hats, Fidel Castro, Kangol and Floppy Hats. The caps are general or custom made to specification using options of various fabrics, namely, Chinos cotton, combed cotton, denim, polyester, Ankara, Adire (Tye & Dye), Batik, Kente and Aso-Oke.
Delivering on our Mandate is pleased to report that soon after the unveiling ceremony was broadcast on BOI sponsored television series, “Wealth Creation Through Industrialisation”, one of the leading oil companies placed order with crown natures for caps to be used for a sports event sponsored by it. Many other organizations have followed suit.
During the visit of Mr Hikmet Ersek, Western Union’s President/CEO to BOI, the two institutions reviewed the first ever Live Banking Panel that they jointly organized in Lagos in 2012 and discussed the next edition scheduled for November 2013 also in Lagos. The 2012 event featured more than 75 entrepreneurs of small and medium enterprises drawn from Nigeria, some African countries and the United States of America who presented their business plans to a panel of bankers that included BOI and ten commercial banks . The event was designed to deepen access of SMEs to credit and strengthen their capacity.