KCB secures Rwf3.5b credit facility to support small business operators

Small-and-medium business operators will have more chances to access credit to finance their enterprises after KCB Rwanda announced a Rwf3.5b facility to support the sector.
Small business owners like this one stand to benefit from the new credit facility. The New Times / File
Small business owners like this one stand to benefit from the new credit facility. The New Times / File

Small-and-medium business operators will have more chances to access credit to finance their enterprises after KCB Rwanda announced a Rwf3.5b facility to support the sector.

The credit line to small-and-medium businesses (SMEs) will be spread over a period of  five years, KCB Rwanda’s managing director, Maurice Toroitich, said.

He added that the facility will support businesses in the agriculture sector, manufacturing, export industry and wholesale businesses.

The funding will be extending to SME businesses under a credit product name, “KCB Wisigara”.

“The money is part of the Rwf5b the bank received from the European Investment Bank last month for onlending to small medium enterprises.

“Business operators will access this money at an interest rate of 16 per cent (based on the euro rate) and one’s capital flow,” Toroitich said.

“The beauty of this loan is that it’s going to be a fixed rate for five years. It is good for those who want to grow their business, but also those that would want to partner with us.”

We want to address the challenge of low access to credit, especially for the case of small business operators, because we believe it’s the small-and-medium enterprises that will grow the economy, Toroitich added.

He advised business operators to always use loans professionally to benefit from them.

“The reality is that most businesses run into difficulties because of lack of financial discipline, and when they fail to make profits or repay the loan, they often blame banks.”

He said that the bank has revised its loan processes and procedures, making it easy for small business operators to access credit.

According to Toroitch, good business management, financial discipline and saving are necessary for one’s business to succeed.

Toroitch argued that banks were currently experiencing the challenge of cash flow because many small businesses keep money in the drawers.

“They don’t actually understand that their cash flow becomes their security for loans,” he said.

According to the 2008 study by the Private Sector Federation, there are over 72,000 SMEs, operating in Rwanda, with about 25,000 that are registered.

Micro-businesses also comprise of 97.8 per cent of the private sector, and contribute 41 per cent of the private sector employment.

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