Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are critical for the economic and social development of any country. In emerging economies, they play a crucial role in providing much needed employment and significantly contribute to national income (GDP).
In Nigeria, SMEs contribute 48% of the country’s GDP, account for 96% of businesses and provide 84% of total employment. They also account for 50% of industrial jobs and about 90% of manufacturing jobs in the country. In spite of its huge contribution to Nigeria’s economy as well as the potential to further drive growth and curb high rate of unemployment in the country, SMEs face many challenges which are anemic to maximising their potentials.
Chief amongst them is lack of or limited access to finance. Unlike their corporate or commercial counterpart, SMEs are the least considered for financing. Poor funding remains one of the key issues affecting the growth and sustainability of SMEs not just Nigeria but globally. 41% of MSMEs in developing countries have unmet financing needs. There is a huge need to improve SMEs’ access to finance and find innovative solutions to unlock sources of capital.
The SME Finance Conference is aimed at providing a platform for stakeholders to deliberate on financing issues for SMEs. The two-day conference will focus on what needs to be done to unlock sustainable financing for SMEs in Nigeria.
It will attract SME enthusiasts and entrepreneurs, policymakers, public and private financiers and other non-state entities.
- SMEs represent about 90% of businesses and more than 50% of employment worldwide.
- Formal SMEs contribute up to 40% of national income (GDP) in emerging economies
- 600 million jobs will be needed by 2030 to absorb the growing global workforce. 7 out of 10 jobs are created by SMEs.
- Access to finance is a key constraint to SME growth. It is a major obstacle facing SMEs in developing countries.
Source: World Bank, SME Finance
- Provide an overview of the current SME financing environment in Nigeria and opportunities to develop it further.
- Build relations between public and private financing groups, legislative bodies, and government agencies that support finance.
- Present both current and future financing opportunities for specific business sectors and fields.
- Create a platform for all practitioners in the sector to interact and network
- Provide opportunities for business owners to meet financiers and pitch directly to them
- Set up platform for mentoring, peer-to-peer learning, knowledge sharing and skill transfer
- Catalogue innovative SME financing solutions
- Commercial Banks, Microfinance Banks and other financial institutions.
- Financial Technology firms lending to SMEs.
- Government Agencies associated to SME sector
- Government financial institutions
- International financing organisations
- Non governmental organisations supporting SMEs
- Small and Medium Businesses
- SME Lending; opportunities and pitfalls
- SME Financing and Financial Technology
- Foreign SME financing opportunities and other financing streams
- Equity finance, startups, and private investment
- Sector Specific Financing
- Government intervention and SME Financing
- Collateral Registry and SME Financing
- Non interest lending: the journey so far
- Keynote Addresses
- Discussion sessions
- Networking platforms
- Special Recognition Award