The outgoing Managing Director, Ecobank Nigeria, Charles Kie, explained that the new product was for its commercial clients as well as well as to support the SME sub-sector, stating that the bank wants to bond with its customers, giving them access to markets, finance and development partners such as the Bank of Industry (BoI).
According to him, “we believe we have a responsibility in providing them with solutions that would help them take care of their businesses in efficient and cost-effective ways. We made these solutions available to our customers to enable easy and fast payment, to enable speed in connections for transactions between customers and their merchants. We are providing them with the framework in which they can also interact with us.”
He explained that “for this reason, we have resolved to expand our scope in our Commercial Banking Businesses and have designed a wide range of products specifically tailored to meet the needs of target customers largely local corporate, SMEs and key public sector participants.
We have also developed a number of initiatives to support trade business and lending to our target customers. “We are willing to work with the peculiarities of each customer’s business to grow the economy. In the same vein, the Emerald Business Club is being proposed as an implementation platform for this Ecobank focus approach.”
Kie maintained that, “our pan-African footprint has consistently provided a strong platform for us to support trade and business growth across Africa. No other bank is better placed to serve you better than Ecobank. The bank is once again offering an amazing opportunity via the Ecobank Emerald Business Club; our commercial bank customers who have been loyal now have an exciting time ahead of them.”
Also speaking at the event, the Head, Commercial Banking, Ecobank Nigeria, Mr. Rotimi Morohunfola, stated the need to make its customers have a competitive edge.
According to him, “we are launching this platform which we think is beneficial to our customers and, of course, would bring significant impact to their businesses. For our commercial clients, we have set out an Emerald Club and the whole idea is to better bond with our customers, give them information about business opportunities across Africa. It would also provide access to markets, finance in partnership with Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN), BoI and Ikooba Technologies.”
Giving the background, Segment Head, SME Banking, Ecobank Nigeria, said, “in 2014, Ecobank launched its SME Club initiative, which also served as a platform for adding value to SMEs through capacity building, networking, access to markets, access to finance, products and services.
“The most significant change of the extension of the club is the Zero maintenance fees, fast track transactions for emerald club members, networking seminars and business forums.
“The main objective of Emerald Business Club is to occupy the domestic private sector, local corporates and SMEs.”
Other benefits of being a member of this club include access to low cost funding at low interest rates, capacity building, SME networking, fasttrack transactions, product building, access to financial advisory, among others.