• Thu. Mar 30th, 2023

    US development finance agency commits $280m to Access Bank SMEs 

    ByBassey Udo

    Jul 25, 2022


    The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) on Monday expressed its commitment to provide $280 Million funding to Access Bank Plc to Trans CEO Scott Nathan today signed a commitment letter for $280 million in financing for Access Bank Plc to finance small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria. 

    DFC Chief Executive Officer, Scott Nathan, said at the occasion of the signing of the commitment document in Lagos that the funding would be available to SMEs as loans, to help close the financing gap and advance financial inclusion in Nigeria. 

    “DFC’s investment in Access Bank demonstrates U.S. support for private sector-led development in Nigeria and throughout West Africa,” Nathan said during his visit to West Africa. 

    “The $280 million loan from DFC will boost financial inclusion in Nigeria and empower women, bolstering the country’s economic growth,” he added. 

    He said funding could be leveraged to unleash the full economic potential of Nigeria through support to the country’s small and medium-sized businesses, financial sector, and climate change-focused enterprises.”

    L-R: Access Bank Deputy MD, Chizoma Okoli; U.S. International DFC CEO, Scott Nathan; Access Bank MD, Roosevelt Ogbonna; with Access Bank Group Head, Women Banking Team, Abiodun Olubitan, in Lagos on Monday.

    The Managing Director of Access Bank, Roosevelt Ogbonna said the loan would include the bank’s commitment to supporting women-owned and -led businesses.

    “Access Bank is extremely pleased to announce this strategic partnership with DFC to support the multitude of businesses across Nigeria who stand to benefit from greater access to finance, especially in an environment that is in need of stronger economic diversification. 

    , “We look forward to utilizing the partnership with DFC in driving further economic expansion and inclusion in Nigeria, with a strong focus on non-oil sectors and women businesses.” 

    “We are delighted to have collaborated with Access Bank and DFC on this significant transaction, which will significantly boost SME corporate activity in Nigeria,” said Rizwan Shaikh Citi EMEA Head of Emerging Markets Corporate Bank. 

    “This is yet another milestone stride for Citi as it executes a focused local-economy development strategy based on solid partnerships with key clients and development agencies.”

    DFC financing for Access Bank will provide needed liquidity, l1given the global economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The loan is expected to support at least 4,000 new SME loans in Nigeria. In addition, the loan proceeds will be on-lent across more than a dozen sectors in the Nigerian economy, with specific focus on women-owned SMEs, and on loans with longer tenors, which will provide more flexibility to borrowers.

    On the other hand, Access Bank is one of the largest banks in Nigeria and has banking subsidiaries throughout Africa.

    Citibank acted as the coordinator and arranger/co-lender to help facilitate the loan. 

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