Mrs Iyabo Ojogbede, Oyo State Manager of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) says the agency has trained over 500 entrepreneurs in the state to improve their productivity.
Ojogbede stated this in Ibadan on Tuesday in an interview on the agency’s activities in 2019.
She stated that the agency is leading the entrepreneurship development institution in the state with a significant impact on small and medium enterprises.
Ojogbede says there were numerous platforms provided for people in the state to enhance their businesses and this has helped to boost economic opportunities for entrepreneurs.
“After the training, we do empower them, we give them equipment to start their businesses.
“And the existing businesses, most times they complained to us about they need a workspace, even cooperative groups we provide them with workspace through this programme called One Local Government One Product Scheme (OLP).
“We provide workspace, capital and equipment; each cooperative we disbursed to them, we give 70 per cent of loan and 30 per cent grant for each cooperative and there is no interest in it.
“And through CBN’s Agsmeis (Agricultural Business Small Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme) loan also we have been training entrepreneurs MSMEs in our agency,” she said.
Ojogbede noted that most applications received for the CBN’s loan had been forwarded to NIRSAL microfinance bank which is in charge of disbursement of funds.
She further stated that funds have been disbursed to about 55 per cent of the applicants out of the 355 entrepreneurs that applied for the loan in the state.
She also said the agency created a digital training skill for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in August which had about a hundred participants on how to market their businesses on social media platforms.
“Most business owners lack the required knowledge and information on how to grow their businesses. Some people just take a loan and don’t know how to manage their money or how to start their business.
“We guide and mentor them on their line of business and on how to manage their capital and have low risk.”