- Data shows that almost 80 per cent of women-owned businesses have limited or no access to credit.
- The lender says its because they lack collateral or proper documentation to access credit facilities.
Kenya Commercial Bank has committed a Sh250 billion loan fund that will extend funding to women-led Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) across the country.
The five year period funding seeks to comment on the bank’s role in spurring economic growth through women empowerment.
To unlock this, the lender says it has already eased credit requirements and documentation such as security to support businesses in a transformation that will guarantee faster loan processing.
“Women entrepreneurs will also be able to get non-financial support extended by partner organizations,” KCB says.
Through the funding, the lender also aims to support entrepreneurship, job creation, and strengthen its outreach towards unique market segments.
KCB’s CEO Paul Russo notes that the MSME sector bears the biggest influence on the economic trajectory of the country and the East African region at large.
He further notes that women-run MSMEs are among the most transformative business enterprises in Kenya which are seen as conglomerates of the future.
“We therefore consider this sub-sector as a promising development frontier and we are re-imagining the way we engage with women entrepreneurs to enable them overcome business challenges by providing working capital and other critical non-financial needs,” Russo said.
Women are often hit by obstacles ranging from limited access to credit facilities, labor and skill gaps, exclusion from key networks, as well as social and legal constraints.
Data shows that almost 80 per cent of women-owned businesses have limited or no access to credit.
This is because they lack collateral or proper documentation to access credit facilities, the lender says.
We are mainstreaming this agenda by widening the net to enable more women entrepreneurs get access to the critical business support touch points,” the lender says.