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UTBankSMEClinic UT Bank’s SME clinic explored solutions for business financing & strategies for success

The Welcome address from the Chief Executive Officer of the Bank, Mr. Stephen Antwi-Asimeng outlined the role of SMEs in the Ghanaian economy.

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The maiden UT Bank SME Clinic, held under the theme ‘Funding Your Business - Strategies, Options and Considerations, brought together industry players, financial experts and entrepreneurs to explore solutions for business financing and strategies towards improving their businesses.

The Welcome address from the Chief Executive Officer of the Bank, Mr. Stephen Antwi-Asimeng outlined the role of SMEs in the Ghanaian economy.

He stated that, "Research has proven that 70% of annual GDP is contributed by SMEs.  Collectively they contribute the largest share to the economy.  As UT Bank's core area is SME, we have come to understand that they usually need a lot more than financing and that is why we have assembled some of the best SME minds to teach us how to unravel some of the problems."

 

One of the key note speakers, Mr. Sampson Agkligoh, Managing Director of InvestCorp, an investment bank providing services in Asset Management, Research and Corporate Finance, spoke on 'Harnessing New Approaches in SME Financing' and urged SMEs to have proper management systems in place while taking tax planning seriously. "If you have your management in place, and you run your business well, banks are willing to help," said Akligoh who also stressed “the need for SMEs to desist from taking short-term loans from banks to develop long-term projects.”

Another keynote speaker, Mr. Richard Siaw, a Senior Investment Officer at private equity firm Oasis Capital, outlined alternative sources of funding for SMEs stating that “the SME sector is an engine of growth in an economy, but in the absence of financial access, it cannot be developed.” At Oasis Capital, Siaw provides risk capital in the form of equity, quasi-equity and profit-sharing facilities to entrepreneurial businesses in Ghana and throughout Africa. 

Mr. Bernard Adade, a partner from the renowned Baker Tilly Andah+ Andah delivered key highlights on the importance of Tax Planning in Business and took participants through Ghana's tax regime, tax planning for small businesses and tax planning methods and strategies. Adade shared that tax planning is important because “it helps businesses control the amount of taxes they pay."

 

During the Q&A segment of the clinic, Mr. Paul Ababio, Head of Strategy at UT Bank, revealed that UT Bank will be launching new products in the coming months, including a SME rating model that will among other capabilities, include use of multi-factor variables to enhance assessment of credit worthiness and allow the bank to provide added insight to clients on how to improve their credit profiles.

UT Bank reinforced its commitment to empowering SMEs by promising to organise more clinics in the future to provide tactical advice for SMEs. The bank will continue to demonstrate strong partnerships in the community to maintain its position as the leading SME centric bank in Ghana.

 

The SME Clinic reinforces UT Bank’s commitment to understand the needs of customers and to develop innovative solutions which reinforces their quest to “LetsDoMore”.

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