• As bank’s 2nd Capacity building program holds in Abuja, Lagos

DBN boss, Okpanachi

BY COBHAM NSA, ABUJA – The Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) Plc has boosted the capacity of about 125 entrepreneurs as part of efforts to re-engineer the Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) as key drivers of Nigeria’s sustainable economic growth and development.

The DBN said the current moves are in line with its mandate of empowering the MSMEs and equipping them with necessary skill sets to enhance their competence in developing and defending a viable business plan.

It is also aimed at improving their capacity to access appropriate funding, as well as helping them to imbibe the discipline needed for efficient utilization of their financing.

Addressing participants at the training, DBN Managing Director, Tony Okpanachi, explained that “While funding is a major problem for MSMEs in Nigeria, there’s also the need to equip our entrepreneurs with critical management skills required to ensure they are better structured and able to effectively manage their respective businesses,”

Okpanachi said as a development financial institution, DBN views challenges faced by SMEs from a holistic perspective, adding that; “As a Development Financial Institution established to bridge the financial gap through our Participating Financial Institutions, our strategic focus is providing liquidity, credit guarantee, and capacity building for MSMEs to be more productive.

He said; “The Capacity Building initiative is an integral part of the bank’s mandate to drive economic growth by empowering MSMEs with the skills required to improve their capacity and productivity.

“So, our objective, in a nutshell, is to equip entrepreneurs across sectors of the Nigerian economy with requisite management skills to develop viable business plans, access funds, and effectively manage their business growth.”

Confidently, the DBN chief said the capacity building training will enhance the participants’ “entrepreneurial and managerial competencies.”

For the participants, it was all about gratitude to DBN, especially as it relates to online marketing and business profiling.

Aside expressing confidence in their enhanced competence, the participants pledged to harness and utilize the different skills earned in growing their respective businesses.

The DBN Entrepreneurship Training Programme is a yearly event strictly targeted at empowering MSMEs in the country.

First organised in year 2019, the empowerment programme then had 100 participants drawn from the country’s six (6) geographical zones converging in Abuja and Lagos for the training.

For this year, there an was increase in the number of participants with 125 of them on board while the programme focused on impacting Nigerian MSMEs with the resilience needed for survival and sustenance especially, in the wake of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

The programme had small business owners being lectured on digital marketing strategies and basic promotional tools by business experts.

The lectures also centered on accessing business opportunities; improving selling skills and presentation skills as well as development of a business plan.

Also to assist the small business owners with book-keeping, which is crucial to accessing loans, DBN partnered with financial experts who took the participants through explanatory videos on Entrepreneurial finance and accounting; how to develop financial records; financial analysis; and how to prepare a balance sheet of their business activities.

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