Wema Bank Plc has enlightened small and medium enterprises (SMEs) on financing opportunities and how to navigate corporate challenges.
At a webinar themed ‘Unbundling Tax, Legal and Compliance – Issues for SMEs’ organised by Wema Bank, experts spoke variously on how SMEs could upscale their businesses and Wema Bank’s products and services they can use to drive their businesses.
The webinar, one of the avenues the bank is using to deepen financial literacy and business optimisation across its stockholder universe, featured Head, Legal Services, Wema Bank, Hilary Ajodo; Fiscal Policy Partner & Africa Tax Leader, Pricewater Coopers (PwC), Taiwo Oyedele; Head, Online Sales & Digital Platforms, Business Day, Linda Ochugbua and Head, Corporate Strategy & Planning, Wema Bank, Olufemi Akinfolarin.
Speaking on ‘Legal Challenges Faced by SMEs’, Ajodo said business education and registration was essential for any serious-minded entrepreneur to avoid floundering.
He said to thrive, “one of the first steps an entrepreneur who intends to run a business should take is to gain adequate knowledge of the business and decide on the nature of corporate entry to register.”
Ajodo said entrepreneurs must endeavour to start small by registering their businesses as an enterprise before migrating to a Limited Liability Company and finding ways of minimising expenses to maximise profit.
He advised SMEs owners not to venture into businesses they are not sure of, sign any contract without adequate information, and avoid litigation as the first step in a dispute, but explore alternative settlement means.
Ajodo added that they should get insurance for their business assets, adequately prepare for unforeseen trends by diversifying their business stream of income and being prepared for government policies that may affect any business.
Wema Bank’s Head of Legal Services further advised them to obtain loans only from legitimate sources, ensure they have a clearly stated business plan for profit maximisation, and join like-minded business associations.
He urged SMEs to avoid capital mismatch and approach Wema Bank as the best option to access business capital facility.
Also speaking, Taiwo Oyedele of PWC highlighted the significance of sustainable evolution of businesses and regulatory dynamic for success.
“As an entrepreneur, you must think about how you grow your brand beyond you by keeping your eyes open for opportunities,” Oyedele said.
He further urged SMEs to ensure they acquire financial literacy and composite business intelligence as this will enhance understanding of tax obligations, regulatory compliance and contractual processes of businesses.
Oyedele stressed the need for documentation and record-keeping of business transactions, advising business owners to always keep receipts and other confirmation of business relationships as evidence, and copy requisite institutions in case of litigation.
Ecobank $350M Bond Was Three Times Oversubscribed By Investors
Ecobank Transnational Incorporated, the parent company of the Ecobank Group, says it has successfully raised $350m Tier 2 Sustainability Notes.
ETI said in a statement on Friday that the bond was more than three times oversubscribed by investors.
“This represents the first-ever Tier 2 Sustainability Notes by a financial institution in Sub-Saharan Africa,” it said.
According to the statement, the Tier 2 issuance is the first to have a Basel III-compliant 10NC5 structure outside of South Africa in 144A/RegS format and will be listed on the main market of the London Stock Exchange.
It said, “The bond, which matures in June 2031, has a call option in June 2026 and was issued with a coupon of 8.75 percent with interest payable semi-annually in arrears.
“An equivalent amount of the net proceeds from the notes will be used by ETI to finance or re-finance, new or existing eligible assets as described in ETI’s Sustainable Finance Framework.”
ETI said investor interest for this sophomore Eurobond issue was global, including United Kingdom, United States, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Africa, achieving a 3.6x oversubscribed order book, of over $1.3bn at its peak.
The Group Chief Executive Officer of ETI, Ade Ayeyemi, said, “This is a landmark issue for Ecobank, and indeed the success of this first Sustainable Tier 2 issuance is testament to our clear strategy, solid positioning across the pan-African banking space as well as our deliberate and long-term focus on sustainable initiatives.
“We are particularly pleased with the diverse order book which reflects the confidence investors have in Ecobank to deliver on our commitment to sustainable financing.”
Wema Bank To Rewards ALAT Users for Referrals
According to the statement released by the Wema Bank, titled “Wema Bank Rewards ALAT Users for Referrals throughout 2021”. The Bank said that ALAT users nationwide with active accounts who have done at least three transactions in the last six months and also referred other users will be rewarded with cash prizes.
The statement reads; “At the beginning of this year, ALAT launched its earn on the go campaign, allowing members of its Trybe to not only earn money on the app but also stand a chance to win one of the three grand prizes at the end of the year.
“For the duration of this campaign, all ALAT users with an active account, who have carried out at least 3 transactions in the last 6 months will be given a unique referral code.
“This code is used to track the number of referrals made from a single account, whereby a customer receives one thousand Naira for every successful invitation to join the ALAT Trybe.
“While referrals are ongoing, we will be tracking all our users’ progress and by December reward the top three referrers with prizes worth over seven hundred thousand Naira.
“The first-place winner will receive the grand prize worth N350,000, while the second place and first runner up, will get a prize worth N200,000.00, and finally in the user that makes it to third place will be giving a prize worth N150,000.00.
“To reward the efforts of all participating users, a quarterly raffle draw will be held twice in the year, where twenty people from the list of top hundred referrers will stand a chance to win Ten thousand Naira each”.
Alat by Wema was founded in 2018 and is the first fully Digital Bank in Nigeria, providing banking services through our Andriod, iOS, and Web apps to over a hundred thousand users in Nigeria.
Unity Bank Forecasts N380.815 Million Profit for Q3 2021
Unity Bank Plc on Friday predicted profit after tax of N380.815 million for the third quarter (Q3) ending September 30, 2021.
This represents a decrease of N162.3 million year-on-year when compared to the N543.14 million recorded in the same quarter of 2020.
The lender projected gross earnings of N10.890 billion for the quarter while interest income was expected to hit N7.204 billion.
Interest expense was estimated at N5.351 billion for the period. Unity Bank puts net revenue from funds at N1.853 billion in Q3 2021.
Other incomes were expected at N3.686 billion and impairment for credit loss was projected at N885.663 million in the quarter under review.
The bank forecasts net operating income at N4.653 billion and puts operating expenses at N4.237 billion.
Profit before tax was projected to hit N416.191 million in the quarter, below the N590.4 million achieved in the same quarter of 2020.
Unity Bank’s Cashflow Projections for the Third Quarter Ending September 30, 2021 (₦)
Net cash provided by operating activities 1,720,815,055
Net cash flow provided by/(used) in investing activities (260,034,996,531)
Net cash flow from operating and investing activities (258,314,181,476)
Net cash used in financing activities 258,694,996,531
Net increase/(decrease) in cash and cash equivalents 380,815,055
Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of period 107,494,314,017
Cash and cash equivalents, end of period 107,875,129,072
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