Series 3: The Impact of COVID-19 on SME Financing in Africa, June 16th
A moderated discussion with a focus on identifying key building blocks, opportunities, and challenges such as access to finance, technology, business formation, business environment & infrastructure. In this web forum, our panelists discussed;
1. The real effects on the ground for SME’s.
2. The plans that are being implemented to curb further negative effects on the market.
3. Future strategies that organizations can rely on to remain resilient and afloat.
4. Opportunities and methods of enabling new growth.
5. Predictions of the paradigm shifts for SME financing.
Chair WebForum: Sophia Bekele, Founder & CEO - DCA Group/CBS International, Africa/USA
Ms. Bekele started by acknowledging that since the crisis began, the world has been presented with a moment for a great rethink at all levels as we now face many overlapping issues. She also appraised the forum of the statistics that Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) create about 80% of Africa’s employment, thus establishing a new middle class and fueling demand for new goods and services.
Panelist: Michael Monari, Founder & CEO - Longitude Finance, Kenya
Mr. Monari stated that since the COVID 19 struck, SME’s have been the most affected due to their business models, and the lack of existent facilities to rescue them due to the uniqueness of the crisis. He emphasized that businesses need to diversify and change the models as well as find other channels to improve chances of survival post-crisis.
Panelist: John Kuria Kariuki, Founder & Group CEO - FinCredit Limited, Kenya
Panelist: Pamela M. Njuguna, Head of Business & Marketing - Credit Bank, named 'Girl Boss' by BusinessToday Kenya
Panelist: John Ngumi, Executive Director - Eagle Africa Capital Partners Limited, Kenya
Panelist: Erick Yong, Co-founder & CEO - GreenTec Capital Partners, Cameroon/Germany