From Left to Right: Mr. Tonye Cole, CEO, Sahara Group, and member of panel of judges for the Next Titans; Mr. Davies Okeowo, winner of the Next Titans; and Mr. Davidson Regah Divisional Head, Retail Banking/SMEs of Heritage Bank, the lead sponsor of the project.
Heritage Bank Limited has restated its commitment to the development and sustenance of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises as a major plank to address youth employment in the country.
Managing Director of the bank, Mr. Ife Sekibo stated this at the final of the Next Titans, a Proudly Nigerian Entrepreneurial Reality Television show by FICOMMS International last Sunday as Davies Okeowo, CEO of Redbrooks Consulting, beat three other finalists to win the prize money of five million naira and a Ford coSport.
Sekibo, who was represented by Davidson Regah, Divisional Head, Retail Banking/SME development, explained that the support for SMEs stemmed from the bank’s mission to create, preserve and transfer wealth across generations. “This is the reason why from inception, Heritage Bank decided to rise up to the occassion and made a commitment to helping young people and young businesses to realise their dreams and goals by partnering with its customers, inclusive of young people and SMEs to create, preserve and transfer wealth across generations, he said.
He added that the bank’s participation and in the Next Titans TV Reality contest as lead sponsor is to reinforce its promise of supporting the sector and fight unemployment in the country.
He listed the various efforts the bank has put ion place to strengthen entrepreurship development in the country to include its agreement with the National Youth Service Scheme, NYSC, which led to the setting aside of N200 million young graduates with brilliant and feasible business ideas.
Other SMEs support from the bank include the establishment of the Paris Klub Scheme which is a platform to cultivate real partnership with Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, MSMEs. Membership of the club gives access to loan support through the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN’s Single Digit Loan Fund. It also facilitates business mentoring programmes through seminars, workshops and talk shows.
The bank also sponsors the Enterprise Development Center’s Enterprise Clinic christened Enterprise Stories which airs on Tuesdays on the Inspiration Radio Station. Your Timeless Wealth Partner is also another platform through which the bank helps to improve the business and lifestyles of customers.
Mr. Mide Akinlaja, the Executive Producer of the Next Titans thanks the bank for the immense support given to the project. “We greatly appreciate the bank for its passion in igniting entrepreneurial spirit of young talented Nigerians; and we atre grateful to the founder of the bank, Mr. Ifie Sekibo who has thrown his support for The Next Titans from the beginning,” he said.
The major objective of the project he said, is too demistfy entrepreneurship and present it as a viable career options to millions of young talented graduates.