Société Générale Ghana (SG-Ghana) has relaunched its innovative facility which has been giving support to local businesses or Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) in the country.
The facility, known as ‘Home of Business’ (HoB) which was originally launched in 2019, is part of SG Groups ‘Grow with Africa’ programme envisioned to help foster development with the economies and populations in subsidiary countries.
It provides support through a multi-dimensional approach for SMEs, infrastructure financing, innovative financing solution, financial inclusion, and a networking platform for businesses and their owners to facilitate their development and growth.
HoB provides advisory services to promote business growth through the support of key partners who are experts in their respective fields. It has partnered Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Registrar General’s Department (RGD), and a host of others to bring free expert advice and mentoring to all businesses, whether a customer or not.
In an opening address during the relaunch at its Osu Branch, Deputy Managing Director (DMD), SG Ghana, François Pousse, underscored the need for SMEs in the country to utilise HoB.
“The relaunch will see the bank driving more coaching and mentoring of businesses, as well as taking an active approach toward attracting and onboarding prospective clients. This include identifying potential customers, pursuing collaborations within their own business spaces – not just the HoB. The team will invest in existence publicity to raise the profile of client’s businesses, thus, facilitating to of-the-mind status for said businesses,” he said.
In an interview with the B&FT, Manager – Home of Business, Bernard Gyimah, explained the focus of the facility and some achievements it has chalked since its inception in 2019.
“It is a Pan-African initiative from Société Générale. We want to support businesses in Africa more than it has done. Therefore, this concept is to bridge the gap, the desire to support, and the fact that there is no capacity from our SMEs to be able to avail the support that the bank wants to give to them.
We set up the business advisory service centres, but we in Ghana decided to call it ‘Home of Business’ because we believe that when we talk of SMEs globally, the definition will encompass about 90 percent of businesses in Ghana, and therefore, we decided not to call it SME centre but ‘Home of Business’ which means that all business can access the facility.
“In total, we have engaged and interacted with 4,200 businesses through our business platform. We realised that in our engagements, they need funding, but you have to bridge the gap. This is what we have been focusing on for the past three years. All of these services are offered for free and you are also not obliged to bank with us. This is to give back to society as our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR),” he said.