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Heritage Bank Resumes Forex Sales to SMEs, to Disburse N100bn Loan

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  • Heritage Bank Resumes Forex Sales to SMEs, to Disburse N100bn Loan

Heritage Bank has resumed the sale of foreign exchange to Small and Medium Enterprises and parents looking to pay their kids school fees abroad.

The announcement was after the Central Bank of Nigeria resumed sale of forex to banks in the country.

The bank is also set to disburse the N100billion set aside by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), as part of proactive measures to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 and revamp the nation’s dwindling economy.

Specifically, the scheme is to provide credit to indigenous pharmaceutical companies and other healthcare value chain players intending to build or expand capacity.

Also, the CBN resumed provision of foreign exchange to all commercial banks for onward sales to parents wishing to pay schools fees and small medium enterprises (SMEs) with plans to make essential imports needed to revamp economic activities across the country.

In particular, the CBN is resuming the provision of over US$100 million per week for both categories.

Meanwhile, Heritage Bank serves as a conduit which will assess and channel the profiles of interested applicants to the CBN while using its platforms to create awareness for the scheme.

The CBN has also made complete arrangements to resume foreign exchange sales to the BDC segment of the market for business travels, personal travels, and other designated retail uses, as soon as international flights resume.

To access the N100bn loans provided by the CBN for firms in the healthcare sector, a corporate entity must submit its application to a participating financial institution (PFI) which could be either a Deposit Money Bank or a Development Finance Institution of its choice with a bankable business plan.

It stated in its latest guidelines that the PFI must appraise and conduct due diligence on the application; and upon approval by the PFI’s credit committee, the application would be submitted to the apex bank with relevant documents attached.

The CBN would process and disburse funds to the PFI for onward release to the project, it added.

The CBN stated that the PFI must receive and review applications submitted by its customers; undertake due diligence based on normal business considerations, and bear the credit risk.

They must also issue offer letters and forward qualified applications to the CBN; disburse the released funds to successful applicants; monitor the project and recover the loans from the beneficiaries, and maintain adequate records of all beneficiaries and facilities.

It requires the PFIs to register all movable assets with the National Collateral Registry; forward periodic returns in the prescribed format on the scheme to the CBN; comply with the guidelines, and carry out any other duties as the CBN may prescribe from time to time.

According to the CBN, eligible participants under the scheme comprise healthcare product manufacturers – pharmaceutical drugs and medical equipment; and healthcare service providers/medical facilities – hospitals/clinics, diagnostic centres/laboratories, fitness and wellness centres, rehabilitation centres, dialysis centres and blood banks, among others.

Others include pharmaceutical/medical products distribution and logistics services; and other human healthcare service providers as may be determined by the CBN from time to time.

Eligible activities under the scheme would include manufacturing of pharmaceutical drugs and medical equipment; establishment/expansion/upgrade of basic and specialised healthcare facilities; and medical/pharmaceutical supplies.

Others are medical/pharmaceutical research and development; distribution of medical/pharmaceutical drugs and supplies; Manufacturing of medical/pharmaceutical drugs distribution technology; and any other healthcare value chain activity as may be prescribed by the CBN.

The CBN said the term loan had a maximum of N2billion per obligor; and the interest rate under the intervention would not be more than five per cent per annum up until February 28, 2021; and that interest on the facility would revert to nine per cent as from March 2021.

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Samsung Launches Its Lastest Mobile Device, ‘Galaxy A04s’ in Nigeria

Samsung has unveiled its latest mobile device, the ‘Galaxy A04s’ in the Nigerian market

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Multinational electronics manufacturing company Samsung has unveiled its latest mobile device, the ‘Galaxy A04s’ in the Nigerian market.

The new device comes in various colors such as Black, Green, White, and Copper, and is packed with a 3GB, 4B RAM with 64GB and 128GB internal storage, Investors King understands.

The A04s also supports Dual SIM and is built with a glass front, plastic back, and plastic frame. It features a triple camera: 50 MP (wide) + 2 MP (macro) + 2 MP (depth) while on the front there is an 5 MP (wide) camera.

Samsung’s launch of this device reinforces the company’s commitment in providing affordable yet quality devices that address the daily needs of consumers.

Following the launch of its latest device in the Nigerian market, Managing Director, Samsung Nigeria Charlie Lee said, “Today is quite remarkable as we introduce Galaxy A04s, ‘The Eagle’. People want a device that is convenient, safe and affordable.

“They want a device that is a one-stop shop to enjoy watching movies, playing games and be productive at the same time.

“Galaxy A04s, another pocket-friendly mobile device from Samsung has been launched in Nigeria to edge out competition, ahead of other emerging markets.

“The Galaxy A04s is an impressive device at excellent value that builds on our growing Galaxy A Series portfolio”.

“With the Galaxy A04s, our customers can experience next-generation performance, demonstrating Samsung’s commitment to providing accessible devices without compromising on quality.”

Following the current economic situation ravaging the country, Joy Tim-Ayoola, HOD MX division added that Samsung through a pay small small scheme called Flex Pay has provided the opportunity for consumers to buy the device and pay in 3-12 months’ installment with as low as N11,000 per month.

She also stated that users of the device can also repair their screens for as low as N12,500 with no limits to frequency or time. Samsung’s launch of its A04s is coming a year after it launched the A03s in 2021.

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SMEs

FSDH Merchant Bank Receives Approval from AfDB for $25 Million Finance Facility to Support SMEs

African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a $25 million credit facility for FSDH Merchant Bank to support Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria.

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African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a $25 million credit facility for FSDH Merchant Bank to support Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria.

FSDH, which provides investment banking and security trading services, received a $15 million trade finance line of credit and another $10 million in loan transaction guarantee to provide loans for SMEs.

Following several limitations faced by SMEs in the country which have stifled their growth, the $25 million facility will enable FSDH to work towards ensuring the growth of SMEs by reducing the trade finance gap in Nigeria and ensuring the availability of funds for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the industrial sector.

The Bank will also guarantee up to 100% of non-payment risks arising from letters of credit and similar trade finance instruments issued by FSDH under the guarantee portion. This will allow confirmation of trade transactions originated by FSDH, benefiting local import and export businesses.

Overall, the facility will catalyze more than $200 million of trade finance transactions across multi-sectors, including agriculture, manufacturing, and energy over the next three years.

Speaking on the recently approved funds, the Director General of The African Development Bank (AFDB), Lamin Barrow said: “The availability of trade finance instruments to drive post-pandemic economic recovery efforts cannot be overemphasized.

“Hence, the Bank’s financing will help eligible Nigerian SMEs to take advantage of existing and emerging opportunities in the domestic and regional markets.”

Also commenting is the Bank’s Director for Financial Sector Development, Stefan Nalletamby, he said, “We are excited about finalizing this facility with FSDH as having the Bank as a partner will aid FSDH in scaling up its trade finance offerings in Nigeria to help meet the ever-increasing trade finance gap.

“This partnership is expected to catalyze more than $200 million value of trade finance transactions across multi-sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing, and energy over the next 3.5 years.” 

The African Development Bank (AFDB) anchors its current Nigeria strategy on two pillars which are supporting infrastructure development and promoting social inclusion through agribusiness and skills development.

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Merger and Acquisition

Access Bank Plans Expansion Into Angolan Market

Access Holdings Plc has announced its planned acquisition of  a 51 percent majority equity stake in Angolan Bank, Finibanco.

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Access Holdings Plc has announced its planned acquisition of  a 51 percent majority equity stake in Angolan Bank, Finibanco.

Investors King learnt that Access Bank Plc is expanding its presence to Angola through the acquisition of a 51 percent stake in Finibanco.

The acquisition of Finibanco was disclosed in a filing to the Nigerian Exchange Limited by Access Holdings Plc.

Finibanco is a full-service commercial bank with over 20 branches and around $300 million in total assets in Angola.

According to Access Holding Secretary, Mr Sunday Ekwochi, the Angolan market as the sixth largest economy in Africa and the seventh largest country overall, with a vast and diversified natural resource base and a growing population, represents a strong potential for the bank’s growth aspirations

The Secretary further stated that the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals in Nigeria and Angola. The transaction is expected to be completed during the first half of 2023. This will however be subjected to customary conditions.

Access Bank has been on an acquisition spree since the beginning of 2021. The acquisition of a majority stake in Finibanco makes it Access’s sixth acquisition in the last 18 months.

In June 2022, it acquired a $37 million stake in Kenya Sidian Bank. Other acquisitions include African Banking Corporation of Botswana Limited, African Banking Corporation Zambia Limited, as well as Cavmont Bank.

Access bank is one of the leading banks in Nigeria. As a commercial bank, it operates through a network of more than 700 branches and service outlets, spanning 3 continents, 17 markets and 45 million customers.

The lending bank employs 28,000 people in its operations in Nigeria and has subsidiaries in sub-Saharan Africa and the United Kingdom. It also has a branch in Dubai, UAE and representative offices in China, Lebanon and India.

As at 31 March 2022, Access Bank had total assets of approximately US $28.8 billion.

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