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Jan 20, 2023

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Equity Bank feted as the best financier for women entrepreneurs by IFC

Equity Group has been feted by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Global SME Finance Awards 2022 as the platinum winner for the Best Financier for Women Entrepreneurs. The Group was also named the silver winner for SME Financier of the Year- Africa and received a special honorary mention under the Product Innovation of the Year category.

Organized by IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and the SME Finance Forum and endorsed by the G20’s Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion (GPFI), the Global SME Finance Awards celebrated the outstanding achievements of financial institutions and fintech companies in delivering exceptional products and services to their SME clients.

While highlighting Equity’s entry for the Best Financier for Women Entrepreneurs award category, the judging panel recognized Equity Group’s business growth noting that this was higher than average for women-led SMEs while risk metrics (NPL) were about half the average. The judging panel also described Equity Group as an excellent role model to smaller, newer banks.

The lender which has a strong regional presence in East and Central Africa has innovated its financial solutions to meet the needs of individual women, women in groups, and women-led SMEs enabling them to enhance their growth and wealth creation. Through the Fanikisha range of tailor-made solutions, women have been included financially enabling them to access affordable loans from as low as Ksh 1,000.  Other services extended free of charge to women entrepreneurs through the Equity Group Foundation include financial education training, business advisory services, and mentorship and coaching. To date, a total of 2.4 million women and youth have benefitted from this 13-week financial literacy and entrepreneurship training.

Commenting on the award, Dr. James Mwangi, Equity Group Managing Director, and CEO said, “The recognition by the IFC and the Global SME Finance Awards is timely and is truly humbling. Equity Group remains committed to its efforts to champion building back better post the COVID-19 pandemic. We have rolled out a private sector-focused stimulus package to accelerate the recovery and resilience of the region through a KES 700 billion funding dubbed ‘Africa Recovery and Resilience Plan’. We intend to reach 5 million MSMEs and 25 million individual borrowers over the next 5 years including women and youth-owned businesses”, he concluded.

For more information on Equity Bank visit www.equitygroupholdings.com

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