The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Bloc, a banking service and FinTech infrastructure company, to provide a platform that brings the benefit of financial technology (FinTech) to SMEs in Nigeria.
A statement from the Corporate Affairs Division of the agency, signed by the Head of Corporate Affairs, Ibrahim Kaula Mohammed, said, “Bloc, which is a FinTech infrastructure company with a PSSP license from the Central Bank of Nigeria, is well positioned to meet the obligations of the partnership.”
According to the statement, SMEDAN, in conjunction with Bloc, designed an automated referral platform that allows SMEs to rapidly access services that are beneficial to their business model from FinTech companies operating in Nigeria and connected to the Bloc infrastructure.
Some of the system’s benefits include providing SMEs with direct access to digital financial tools, social commerce platforms, lending services, digital banking services, and industry-specific supply chain solutions.
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At the signing ceremony, which took place recently at the corporate headquarters of the agency in Abuja, the Director-General and Chief Executive Officer of SMEDAN, Mr Wale Fasanya, said the agency, in its commitment to fostering the progress of SMEs in Nigeria with multiple interventions, believes that FinTech can help in this mission by diversifying and extending their marketing and sales from purely digital channels to SMEDAN’s confirmed database of diverse SMEs operating across multiple sectors and geographies in Nigeria.
He said, “We know this partnership with Bloc and the subsequent platforms that are being developed will benefit the SMEs who work with us by improving access to specialised services developed by the innovative fintech sector of Nigeria.”
The SMEDAN boss further stated that “We have over 4,000,000 registered FinTechs, and we are always thinking of ways by which we can improve their existence. Our success is measured by how much we can do for them, and we believe we have shown our own level of innovation by developing this platform with Bloc.”
In his remarks at the ceremony, the Business Development Officer of Bloc, Mr Kingsley Ikart, said as an infrastructure company that provides services to other FinTechs, he believes the platform designed by both SMEDAN and his company would allow some of these FinTechs to extend their brilliant services to SMEs who would otherwise not have been aware of what they do.
Mr Ikart noted that the partnership between his company and SMEDAN was a win-win because these SMEs can now benefit from such innovations without extending themselves and compromising the time they need to spend tending to their businesses.