September 11, 2018

dfcu Bank targets SMEs to help win oil contracts

June 13, 2018—Every month, dfcu Bank will be organizing oil and gas content skilling and sensitization sessions as part of its Business Accelerator Program, aimed getting selected groups of small business people up to speed with the emerging opportunities and the bank’s available lending options.

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Bank officials say they want to target multiple sectors of the economy so that small businesses can exploit the opportunities in the oil and gas sector. The latest batch involves (above) medical practitioners.

On Wednesday morning, William Sekabembe, the dfcu Executive Director and Chief Commercial Officer spoke about the bank’s support for the local content agenda through an Accelerator programme, providing skills and training as well as provision for financial solutions.

“We have taken deliberate steps to form partnerships that give us access to cheap funds making it possible for us to extend long term financing at favorable rates,” Sekabembe said. FMO, the Dutch Development Bank, is the leading financial backer for dcfu Bank’s small business initiatives like this latest one.

At least 100 business leaders across different sectors will benefit from these sessions. As part of the Business Accelerator Program, dfcu has planned a series of workshops targeting multiple sectors that can potentially take up opportunities in the budding oil and gas sector.

The bank’s asset base has doubled from UGX1.7 trillion in 2016 to UGX3 trillion ($780 million) in 2017 while profits tripled from UGX46 billion to UGX127 billion ($33 million) in the same period. Much of the gains have come from a decision to buy the assets of the former Crane Bank from Bank of Uganda in late 2016.

According to Harriet Kiwanuka, the Head Oil & Gas sector at dfcu, a suite of bespoke financing solutions for local suppliers in the Oil & Gas Sector is now offer. “We have developed innovative and flexible financial solutions to ensure that financing is made available on terms which meet the requirements of both local content services providers and the bank,” she said.

Dfcu Bank wants these monthly sessions to improve the operational capacity and access to financing for local small businesses. Over 30 medical practitioners, under their umbrella, the Uganda Private Medical Practitioners Association, attended a session held at dfcu Towers in Kampala this morning. They held extensive discussions on a range of issues including health, safety and environment; opportunities and standards in medical services, legal and regulatory framework in the oil and gas sector and access to finance.

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