Rosie Glazebrook, CEO of the CommonWealth Enterprise and Investment Council (CWEIC), has noted that Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are key to the development of many economies in the Commonwealth.
This, in her view, underscored the CWEIC strategy to work with partners in key CommonWealth markets to foster MSME growth.
Madam Glazebrook made these comments when she paid a courtesy call on one of CWEIC’s key partners in Ghana, UMB (Universal Merchant Bank).
This formed part of Madam Glazebrook’s official tour of Ghana this week.
The Bank structured the visit to enable Madam Glazebrook get a firsthand view of Ghanaian MSMEs, by hosting the CWEIC delegation at its “Centre for Businesses”, within the Madina market enclave.
Nana Dwemoh Benneh, CEO of UMB, in his remarks, said ”A number of significant economic reports argue that MSMEs account for over 70% of all economic activities in Ghana.
“As a Bank, we have been focused on Ghanaian MSMEs and their growth since 1972, and thus we share this passion for MSMEs with the CWEIC.”
“Indeed, we are proud to have been selected by the CWEIC to partner the University of Coventry program to build capacity for African SMEs, and look forward to rolling out the program this year, especially to MSMEs with female leadership”.
Madam Glazebrook in her remarks said, “UMB is Ghana’s oldest Merchant Bank, and I daresay the CommonWealth is one of Ghana’s oldest international relationships. Central to our work at the CWEIC is the COMMONWEALTH ADVANTAGE- the fact that overall its 21% cheaper to do business across the CommonWealth. We are thus very passionate about bringing this advantage to bear on businesses, and I am excited that one of our key partners is doing this in lock-step with us here in Ghana.”
Madam Glazebrook and her party were escorted around the market by Nana Dwemoh Benneh and other officials of the Bank.
This was followed by a presentation by Mr. Roland Akafia, Head of Strategy on UMB’s MSME program and the intergation with CWEIC .
This was followed by a luncheon with MSME customers of the Bank.
UMB is a leading indigenous bank known for bringing a uniquely Ghanaian perspective to banking, since 1972.
Headquartered in Accra and licensed by the Bank of Ghana, the bank operates out of 35 branches across Ghana.
Its strategic aspiration is to become a digital 1st, SME focused bank. The bank has pioneered several innovations in this market, including SPEEDAPP, one of the best performing agnostic banking apps in the sub-region.
The CWEIC is a commercial, not-for-profit membership organisation with an official mandate from the Commonwealth Heads of Government to facilitate trade and investment throughout the 54 Commonwealth member nations.
The role of CWEIC is to use the convening power and trusted network of the Commonwealth, which is led by Her Majesty The Queen, to drive trade and investment. CWEIC’s network includes around 100 business and government Strategic Partners (members) including UMB, Zenith Bank, Trade & Investment Queensland and the Government of the Maldives from 30 countries and territories.
Every two years, CWEIC hosts the Commonwealth Business Forum in association with the host country of The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).
Universal Merchant Bank (UMB) is a full-service financial institution specializing in customized banking products and services.
UMB opened on March 15, 1972, and is a leading Ghanaian indigenous bank with considerable financial expertise.
UMB is recognized for its entrepreneurial approach, innovative use of technology and distinctive banking solutions.
UMB currently has thirty-six (36) branches, three (3) UMB Centres for Businesses, 1 UMB PPP Incubator Centre and a vast network of ATMs. UMB is also ISO 27001 and PCI DSS certified.