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Ecobank Nigeria Introduces Special Initiative for Female Business Owners

By Dipo Olowookere

As part of activities marking the 2019 International Women’s Day, Ecobank Nigeria has unveiled a special initiative for female entrepreneurs.

The platform tagged Ecobank Female Entrepreneurs Initiative was designed to recognise women as special and unique customers who require tailor-made service offerings.

The concept is designed to provide women with the necessary support to help them excel in their endeavours, promote and grow their businesses and generally position them for increased participation, validation and contribution within the society.

Managing Director Ecobank Nigeria, Mr Patrick Akinwuntan, while unveiling the initiative at the bank’s head office in Lagos, said “increasingly, we are seeing the change in the attitudes of women, and their economic viability as individuals and leaders in their fields. Their banking and financial services as a whole therefore present vast opportunities, if properly understood and managed.”

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According to Mr Akinwuntan, the launch is a charge to the society in line with the theme of the International Women’s Day 2019, to challenge the status quo and strive for a balance by empowering females in their immediate environments and subsequently, on a macro level.

In his words, “Our female customers will become our flagship ambassadors and we have created this platform for them in line with the sustainability requirements of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

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“These women will be provided with free health checks, training and empowerment sessions and other support tools from Ecobank. The Ecobank Female Entrepreneurs Initiative aims at empowering women by helping them build capacity to grow their businesses.”

Some of the benefits include access to credit facilities with little or no collateral, network opportunities across Africa, financial advisory services, wealth management resources and loyalty schemes.

Also speaking, Executive Director, Commercial Banking, Mrs Carol Oyedeji, stated that Ecobank, as a Group, was proud to join the rest of the world to commemorate the IWD 2019, with the special theme #BalanceforBetter.

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For her, this year’s theme leaves no one in doubt as to the dire need to raise more awareness that gender balance is not a women’s issue but a human issue that must be tackled for us to have a better society and that it should not be mistaken for a battle between the sexes.

She called on all in the corporate world to join hands to ensure that “our women attain their full potential in all areas of society, including the workplace, which is vital for our communities and economies to thrive.

“A balanced world is a better world. We must help forge a more gender-balanced world by celebrating and recognising women’s achievements, raising awareness against bias and taking action for equality”.

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Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan.

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