GCB support to the SME sector is demonstrated by the initiative the Bank has taken, she said, adding: “We have disbursed over GH₵ 20 million to about 603 businesses, since we introduced six SME loan products nine months ago.”
“Our loan origination process has also been simplified because we use an objective credit scoring system to determine the eligibility of a business for the loan,” she added.
Mrs Wunu was speaking to the business community on Tuesday at the opening of GCB Bank SME 2016 Business forum organised on the theme: “Sustaining SME opportunities in today’s market.”
She said the bank has introduced SME segment specialist in every region and branches with the singular aim of supporting and growing businesses in their catchment areas.
“We have introduced six different times of loan product for the SME sector alone. The intention is to tailor make the solution to the varying financial needs of the SME sector,” she said.
SMEs constitute more than 92 per cent of registered businesses and nearly 99 per cent of unregistered businesses in the country.
But, Mrs Wunu noted: “Yet they have for a long time being neglected by most financial institutions in their strategies and resource allocations.”
She said the development has led to what she described as “loan sharks” to infiltrate and dominant business in the sector.
“GCB is determined to support and help nurture businesses in the SME sector so that they can exploit their potential and possibly become known brands or multinationals like the Toyotas and Apples of this world,” she said.
“We acknowledge that the SME sector forms over 90 per cent of our business banking portfolio and we want to improve the attractiveness of the segment for the banking industry.”
Mr Ernest Mawuli Agbesi, Managing Director Of GCB Bank Limited said the forum was billed to offer great practical assistance to SMEs around the country and the national economy.
He said the forum was a direct intervention and business solution for SMEs at a time when entrepreneurs were looking to maximise returns and enhance the bottom-line of their business.
The forum took into consideration the immense contribution of SMEs make to productivity, employment, optimum use of resources and national development.
The embodiment of Ghanaian business, representing various sectors such as manufacturing, commerce, hospitality, service and agriculture, participated in the forum.
“Our interest in your business is not only to take deposits; our interest lies in all aspect of your business. This includes your brand, your business strategy, your human resource management, bookkeeping, sustainability as well as the bottom-line of the business.”
He said SMEs played important role as the engine of growth of Ghana’s economy contributing to about 70 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product.
“They also account for 85 per cent of manufacturing employment as well as 75 per cent of employment, this makes SMEs extremely important to the national economy.
“Despite this significance of SMEs, they are often time faced with the threat of failure with statistics indicating that three out of five fail within the first few months and top of the list of threats is SME financing.
“As Ghana’s largest indigenous bank with the development and growth of local business at the core of our strategy, GCB is confident to say we will ensure the success of the SME and informal sector for the good of the national economy.”
“This underlines our strong commitment to inject life into SMEs with right mix of products and services,” Mr Agbesi said.
The Bank assured the SMEs they could be supported with timely credit facilities to the tune of GH₵100,000 to grow their business with no collateral required.
Source: GNA/News Ghana