By Peter Egwuatu
In its efforts to encourage saving habits especially from the under-banked and unbanked segments of the people, Oceanic Bank International Plc rewarded 219 micro business customers with various gifts
to boost their operations following the completion of the Bank’s “Be Ya Own Oga” promo.
The final draw which was held last weekend in Lagos saw winners cart away motorcycles, grinding machines, tricycles. pressing irons and GSM call centre sets.
Speaking at the draw, Head, Development Finance Department, Oceanic Bank, Mr. Felix Oyakhamoh said the Bank had achieved the aim of encouraging entrepreneurs to set aside funds towards growing their businesses.
“The promo was very successful and further confirms the Bank’s belief that there is enormous economic potential in the micro business level of the economy, especially when operators cultivate the habit of saving.
All our SMEs need is adequate support and guidance which Oceanic Band has been providing since we launched our development finance department in 2007.”
Oyakhamoh said the Bank remained committed to the growth and development of the economy through its support for Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs). “We are using our development finance platform to contribute to poverty alleviation and facilitate the success of small business initiatives across the nation.”
He disclosed that Oceanic Bank set aside over N16 billion to support SMEs, stressing that a maximum of N500, 000 micro loans are given out to qualified micro finance customers as working capital or asset financing depending on what business the customer is into.
Oceanic Bank Micro finance products target customers include individuals involved in economically active enterprises such as tailors, Farmers, Hair dressers, Barbers, Vulcanizers, Okada/Tricycle operators, Petty Traders etc.
The bank has since introduced three microfinance products including OMSA GO; OMSA GROW and OMSA PROGRESS. They are designed to increase earnings and savings habits of the economically active poor by removing all traditional bottle necks in creating access to financial sector for the unbanked and the under-banked segments.
In 2007, Oceanic Bank set up the Development Finance department to complement its Corporate Social Responsibilities initiatives from the angle of raising standard of living and poverty reduction. The Bank’s microfinance products have built-in health insurance as part of its main liability product in order to assist its customers to address and manage their health issues so as not to serve as a distraction for their businesses.