The I AM Series

I AM SPIRIT OF AN ENTREPRENEUR

DIAMOND BANK PARTNERS FACEBOOK TO HOST SHEMEANSBUSINESS TRAINING FOR FEMALE ENTREPRENEURS IN CALABAR

Diamond Bank in partnership with Facebook has commenced the first phase of targeted training for Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (SME) owners to enhance their businesses through online marketing platforms.

The training exercise, which commenced in Calabar, Cross River State on Thursday, 30 August 2018 with over 120 SME owners in attendance, is aimed at scaling up the skills of small businesses to cater to millions of Facebook users in Nigeria and beyond.

Head, Regional Businesses -South, Diamond Bank Plc, Nkem Okoro, told newsmen at the event that the training is in collaboration with SheLeads Africa, a representative of Facebook.

“As one of the fastest growing retail banks in the country, Diamond Bank is always at the forefront of leveraging technology to drive SME businesses. The idea behind the training is to give our SME customers an opportunity to merge their personal and business Facebook accounts. There are over two billion people on Facebook and with that, our customers will be able to showcase their products to this large population as well as get leads that will take their businesses forward. We have over 120 SME customers that are participating in today’s event and we intend to actualize our promise to provide them financial and non-financial services. We provide such non-financial services knowing that when our customers succeed it will trickle down to us”. Commented Okoro.

Head, Emerging Businesses, Diamond Bank Plc, Ayodele Olojede, said the Bank recognized that access to market was a limiting factor in doing business, adding that, "We also recognize the contributing factor of women in the growth of GDP. It is therefore important to continue to support them to scale up and improve their productivity.  What we are doing today is to teach them how to create and monetize their online visibility. Just by being on Facebook, you can increase your sales by over 33 per cent and a lot of women are not aware of this. Facebook is already a market for 26 million Nigerians and yet business owners are unaware. That is the reason for this training- to support businesses to grow. This is one of the first series across the country and we are planning to reach between 10, 000 and 20, 000 customers nationwide.”

One of the participants, Ruth Ntekim, owner of a luxury perfume store in Calabar, said, "I have learnt how to market products online by locating my audience and giving them direct information. Sometimes when you go on Facebook, you do not give the specific details to be able to attract the required audience, I have learnt how to restructure and how to create the right profile."

Pastor Peace Ogar, also a business woman, said she runs a boutique in Calabar which has presence online. “I am here to learn and of course you can’t get tired of learning. There is no knowledge that is useless, so I am here to learn.  I have learnt how to give my business social media presence, and how to reach out to my audience, how to create content for my business, and have a target audience. To be honest with you, I have been on Facebook just posting pictures, relating with people, and I have never thought of how to reach out to people business wise. But today I have learnt how to reach out to people business wise, how to use insight, and how to get people to relate to you. Today, I have learnt that you can reach out to people, and then get feedback from them,” Ogar said.

Diamond Bank Plc is Nigeria’s lead driver in the financial industry, providing enhanced customer experience through innovation and technology. Regarded as supporter of Small and Medium-Scale Enterprises through SME lending, capacity building, business seminars and workshops. Our mobile banking app, “Diamond Mobile”, currently has over three million active subscribers on its platform.

 

 

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DIAMOND BANK TO REWARD CUSTOMERS WITH SCHOLARSHIPS

The incoming academic session is set to be an exciting one for our customers as we plan to reward holders of the youth banking accounts with scholarships worth N3million.

Titled, the Diamond Future and Cool-Teens Scholarships offer, this campaign is targeted at parents with children in preschool, primary and secondary schools.

Speaking to newsmen at our head office today, Head, Personal Banking, Diamond Bank Plc, Adaeze Ume, said, “The scholarship offer is our own way of supporting and reassuring customers of our promise to provide value added services on their customer journey with us. The goal of the Diamond Future and Cool-Teens Scholarship offer is to promote a savings culture amongst parents and guardians especially towards saving for their children/wards’ school fees. This is a good way for parents to fund their children’s education, whilst diversifying their investments.”

To qualify for the Scholarship offer, all you need to do is open either a Diamond Future or Cool-Teens account at any Diamond Bank branch and increase the account balance to a minimum of N25,000 or set up a standing instruction with a minimum of N10,000. Every multiple of N25,000 saved gives the customer an extra chance of winning in the draw.  Qualified account holders will participate in a draw at the beginning of each academic term where winners will be selected and rewarded with scholarship prizes in their schools.

“The Diamond Future and Cool-Teens accounts offer customers a structured savings plan with the added flexibility of saving various amounts monthly. Some of the account benefits include: 13th month bonus reward, competitive credit interest rates, access to educational tools, games for kids and a free debit card with trendy design options that permits teens to receive pocket money, pay for movie tickets, buy books, video games and enjoy loads of freebies like portable tablets and phones when they join the Cool-Teens community,” concluded Ume.

 

Visit the nearest Diamond Bank branch for more details or click this HERE to learn more.

 

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DIAMOND BANK DISBURSES ₦1BILLION UNDER CASH FLOW-BASED SME LENDING SCHEME

We are excited to announce a major milestone in a first of its kind lending scheme to support Small and Medium- Scale Enterprises (SME) with disbursements of over N1 Billion under the cash flow-based lending scheme.

This Scheme was launched in January 2017 in partnership with Women’s World Banking ( WWB) and features the Cash Flow-based MSME Lending Methodology, which has a strategic focus on cash flow, net asset capacity, character and business proficiency of SMEs as a means of determining their eligibility to access credit.

Commenting on this great achievement, Uzoma Dozie, CEO, Diamond Bank Plc said, “This milestone is a demonstration of our resolve to develop innovative ways of advancing financial inclusion in Nigeria and a signal to many more successes to come as we push through our technology-driven retail-focused strategy, designed to position Diamond Bank as the most profitable and fastest growing retail bank franchise in Nigeria by the year 2020”.

Under the lending scheme, the Bank was able to disburse a total of ₦267 Million during the pilot phase, while it disbursed ₦750 Million between June and August 2018. Remarkably, all the loans disbursed under the scheme to the 550 small businesses are performing despite the recipients of the facilities being first-time borrowers.

“We are confident that the future of retail banking belongs to banks with disruptive business models and solutions that deliver superior customer experience through strategic alliances, as well as create life-style-focused products, processes and channels. We pride our financial inclusion strategy as the most robust and customer-centric in the Nigerian banking industry and will achieve more milestones through data-based initiatives that are simply, Beyond Banking”, concludes Dozie.

We pride ourselves as Nigeria’s lead driver of financial inclusion, providing enhanced customer experience through innovation and technology. Regarded as supporter of Small and Medium-Scale Enterprises through SME lending, capacity building, business seminars and workshops. Our mobile banking app, “Diamond Mobile”, currently has over three million active subscribers. We have over the years leveraged our underlying resilience to grow our asset base and key business relationships.

Our partnership with domestic and international bodies such as The Gates Foundation, MTN, Medical Credit Fund (MCF), and Entrepreneur Development Centre (EDC) has led to creating easy access to financial services for the unbanked.

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Diamond Bank Drives Growth With 3 Million Digital Customers In Q2 2018

Our second quarter unaudited financial report for the period ended June 30, 2018, has been released to the Executive Management and the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), with a strong focus on the Nigerian market, especially the retail business segment through our digital penetration strategy.

The report showed that our digital strategy is paying off as we recorded a milestone figure of three million digital customers as well as a significant increase in our mobile platform transaction fees.

Non-interest income went up 6.4% to N18.8 billion on higher fees from retail transactions on the mobile platform while customers loan volume decreased by 3.6% to N728.7 billion as maturities exceeded new loans during the period but investments in fixed income securities increased 8.0% to N241.7 billion over the same period, according to the report.

Although the net interest income reduced year-on-year by 14.4% to N46.2 billion due to lower interest income from loans and investments, and higher interest expense on deposits; impairment charges declined 2.9% to N18.39 billion. Our profit after tax for the first half of the year stood at N2.2 billion.

Commenting on the result, Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Uzoma Dozie said: “At a macro level the Nigerian economy continued to record improvements because of stable, higher than anticipated oil prices. We have witnessed 15 months of expansion reflected in monthly PMI data, but investor sentiment has remained mixed caused in part by the election season factor. We have capitalised on the positive macro environment to sustain interest income in the short run with positive prospects for growth and have made progress in growing non-interest income.

Importantly, we have continued to build awareness of Diamond Bank in the wider financial ecosystem to develop new frontiers in retail banking. Amongst this activity were the Beauty Souk and TechFest events, targeted at entrepreneurs and emerging businesses in the fashion and technology sectors respectively. Our partnership with Lagos Business School’s Enterprise Development Center to support young entrepreneurs continued with the seventh season of the Building Entrepreneurs Today program.

In addition to retail banking, we are investing more resources in our mid-market business banking services to seize the opportunities emerging in that segment. In the second half of 2018, these investments will lead to improved profitability overall.

Despite a tough six months being reported, the outlook for 2018 remains bright for the Bank as we continue to focus on a return to strong profitability and improvement in other KPIs.”

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FMDQ OTC APPOINTS DIAMOND BANK TO ITS BOARD

Diamond Bank Plc, a leading retail bank in Nigeria with a track record of quality banking solutions for customers has been appointed as a member of the Board of FMDQ OTC Plc, Nigeria’s foremost debt capital, currencies securities exchange and derivatives over-the-counter securities exchange.

According to the letter of appointment obtained by our correspondent, Diamond Bank’s selection as a member to the board is because of its leadership in the financial space, which has been adjudged by stakeholders in FMDQ as relevant to FMDQ markets, as well as recognition as a Financial Market Active Bank (FMAB) and a Systemically Important Bank (SIB).

Commenting on the appointment, Head, Corporate Communications, Diamond Bank Plc, Chioma Afe said, “This appointment is great news for us at Diamond as it not only validates our strategy, we also have an opportunity to develop the nation’s financial industry through the securities exchange”.

Diamond Bank will work in collaboration with other board members in setting out the broad operational and governance architecture designed to drive the OTC Securities Exchange.

The appointment and induction is effective from July 27, 2018.

ABOUT DIAMOND BANK PLC                     

Diamond Bank Plc is a leading Nigerian financial services company, which commenced operations as a private limited liability company on March 21, 1991. In May 2005, it was listed on The Nigerian Stock Exchange.

Today, Diamond Bank Plc a leading retail bank in Nigeria. A lead driver of financial inclusion, providing enhanced customer experience through innovation and technology. Regarded as a supporter of lifestyle trends, its mobile banking app, “Diamond Mobile”, currently has over 2 million active subscribers on its platform. Diamond Bank has over the years leveraged its underlying resilience to grow its asset base and to retain its key business relationships.

It has also played a leading role in partnering with domestic and International bodies such as Women’s World Banking, The Gates Foundation, MTN, etc. to create easy access to financial services for the unbanked. We have cultivated excellent banking relationships with well-known international banks, allowing us to provide a range of world class banking services to suit the business needs of our clients

ABOUT FMDQ OTC PLC

FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange (FMDQ) was registered by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Nigeria, in 2012, and launched in 2013 as an OTC securities exchange with a primary focus on organizing and deepening Nigerian financial markets. It is the foremost debt capital, foreign exchange and derivatives over-the-counter securities exchange, strategically driven to transform the Nigeria financial markets through its “GOLD” (Global Competitiveness, Operational Excellence, Liquidity, and Diversity) agenda.

With an average annual market turnover of about N118 trillion over the last three years, FMDQ operates the largest securities exchange in Nigeria. It is a self-regulatory organization (SRO) responsible for regulating the activities of its Members in the markets under its governance, through effective collaboration with key financial market regulators.

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MORE WINNERS EMERGE IN DIAMONDXTRA SEASON 10

More winners have emerged in the DiamondXtra Season 10 scheme as the Bank recently unveiled 1,016 winners in the second quarterly draw held at its Asa - Afariogun, Ajao Estate, Lagos branch.

Addressing journalists after the draw, Osita Ede, Head Mass Market at the Bank said that DiamondXtra Season 10 promises bigger and better rewards for the esteemed customers of the Bank. He also stated that the DiamondXtra draws will reward a total of 1,016 customers each quarter -producing a star winner of a brand-new Hyundai car, one winner of an education grant for five years, three winners of a rent grant worth N1, 000,000 each and AJAO 1other prizes.

A targeted draw for customers in Isolo and Ajao environs preceded the quarterly draw and saw customers winning cash prizes ranging from N50,000 to N100,000 amongst other mouth-watering prizes.

ajao 2.pdf“The DiamondXtra reward scheme is open to new and existing customers and all you need to do is to visit the nearest Diamond Bank branch, open a DiamondXtra account and fund it with N5,000. The more the multiples of N5,000 you save, the higher your chances of winning. The draws scheduled for this season reaffirms Diamond Bank’s commitment to financially empower more Nigerians by spreading the draws across the six geopolitical zones throughout the four business quarters of the year,” concluded Osita.

Buttressing Osita’s point, Karimot Tukur, Head, Consumer Banking, Diamond Bank Plc told pressmen that DiamondXtra is aimed at rewarding the Bank’s loyal customers, enabling them pay rents, school fees and empowering more Nigerians financially.

Kenneth Ukanwa, Manager, Technology Advisory, KPMG in his address said that KPMG is working with Diamond Bank to ensure that the procedure set out for the draw is transparent.

Head, Surveillance & Enforcement, Consumer Protection Council (CPC), Mr, Anyanwu Camillus said that the CPC saddled with ensuring that the rights of the customers of the Bank who qualify for the draw are protected and that all winners are duly rewarded.

The highlight of the event were the testimonials shared by past winners on how the reward scheme has changing their lives positively.

CBN APPROVES AGSMEIS LOAN FOR DIAMOND BANK’S BENEFICIARIES

Agri-Business Small and Medium Enterprises Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS) is an initiative of the Bankers’ Committee in a bid to support and complement the Federal Governments’ efforts at promoting Agri-businesses/Small and Medium Enterprises as a vehicle for sustainable economic development and employment generation.

This initiative requires all Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) to set aside 5% of their annual profit after tax (PAT) and as at Dec. 2017, about N26bn has been accrued from all DMBs for the scheme, with Diamond Bank contributing N141m to the pool. This fund is expected to increase to about N60bn by June 2018, following remittance of DMBs 2017 5% PAT to the pool.

The scheme is divided into three (3) broad categories;

  1. Developmental Component – to be utilised to administer the program by CBN
  2. Indirect Component – to be disbursed either as equity through fund managers
  3. Direct Component – to be disbursed as debt to customers through DMBs

The Developmental Component constitutes 5% of the fund. CBN will apply this fund for capacity building, technical assistance to MSMEs and cover operational costs of managing the scheme.

The Indirect Component constitutes 45% of the fund. This fund is to be applied as equity and shall be managed by Fund Managers.  Applications are submitted through PFIs to Project Monitoring Committee (PMC), who recommends request for further approval by the appointed Board of Trustees (BoT). Upon approval by BoT, CBN disburses fund as applicable. PFI’s do not directly benefit from the scheme (except in terms of float, where applicable) and there is no risk to bear as fund is managed by Fund Managers.

The Direct Component constitutes 50% of the fund and this is to be disbursed as loans to eligible MSMEs through Participating Financial Institutions (PFIs). CBN has commenced disbursement under this component, with the flag off ceremony which held in Abuja on 12th April 2018.

AGSMEIS is sector agnostic and the fund can be accessed for start-up businesses, business expansion or revival of ailing companies in sectors such as;

  • Agricultural Sector; covering agricultural value chain activities such as production, inputs supply, storage, processing, logistics and marketing.
  • Real Sector; including manufacturing, mining and petrochemicals.
  • Service Sector; including Information and Communication Technology (ICT), beauty and the creative industry.
  • Other activities as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) may determine from time to time

APPLICATION PROCESS

Applicants are expected to be trained and certified by any of the CBN approved Entrepreneurial Development Centres e.g. Lagos Business School, House of Tara, Fate Foundation, Thrive Agric etc to access the loan.

For more information on the AGSMEIS, visit any Diamond Bank, call our 24-hour Contact Centre on 07003000000, or send an email to enquiries@diamondbank.com.

DIAMOND BANK APPOINTS OLUSEYI BICKERSTETH CHAIRMAN AS CHRIS OGBECHIE RETIRES

Diamond Bank has announced on Wednesday the appointment of Mr. Oluseyi Bickersteth as the new Chairman of the Board of Directors effective June 26, 2018.

He takes over from Prof. Chris Ogbechie who retired with effect from March 31, 2018, after completion of his tenure.

The Bank in a notice dated July 2, 2018, signed by Uzoma Uja, Company Secretary/Legal Adviser, to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), reads:

“We write to formally notify the Exchange that the Board of Directors of Diamond Bank Plc, has appointed Mr. Oluseyi Bickersteth as an Independent Non-Executive Director and the approval of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for the appointment has been granted effective June 26, 2018. The Board has also unanimously appointed Mr. Bickersteth as the substantive Chairman of the Board of Directors in replacement of Prof.  Chris Ogbechie who retired from the Board with effect from March 31, 2018, after completion of his tenure”.

Seyi B (chairman)Mr.  Bickersteth holds a B.Sc. in Economics from the University of Ibadan and an M.Sc. in Economics from the York University in Canada. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN).

Prior to being the Chairman of KPMG Africa Practice and National Senior Partner of the Nigerian Practice, Mr. Bickersteth was the Head of Tax and Regulatory practice and served as Engagement Partner on major tax advisory and compliance projects. Mr. Bickersteth played an oversight and coordinating role in KPMG’s delivery of professional services to companies in the countries comprising the Gulf of Guinea including Nigeria, Cameroun, Angola, Equatorial Guinea & Gabon. He also heads the Oversight Committee for KPMG Africa.

Bickersteth was involved in Vision 2010 of the Federal Government of Nigeria, which prepared a memorandum on the vision for Nigeria, by the year 2010. He has also chaired a working group on “Nigerian Tax Reforms 2003 & Beyond” for the Federal Government of Nigeria. Mr. Bickersteth also served on the technical committee of the Federal Government that prepared the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) for the oil and gas sector. The Bill is to reform the sector and encourage local content and active participation of indigenous players in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry.

DIAMOND BANK REWARDS BUDDING ENTREPRENEURS WITH N15M THROUGH BET 7

Leading retail bank, Diamond Bank Plc has once again demonstrated its passion for supporting small businesses by rewarding finalists of the seventh season of the Building Entrepreneurs Today (BET) programme with N15million grant.

Ikenna Ubah, Tope Alake, Jumoke Dada, Bayo Ojelabi and Osagie Azeta emerged winners of the grants having displayed exceptional skills and productive business ideas after six months of entrepreneurship training.

The BET programme, which is the Bank’s flagship Corporate Sustainability project, is run in partnership with the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) of the Pan Atlantic University and has catered to over 350 entrepreneurs since inception in 2011.

Speaking at the BET 7 dinner and award ceremony held in Lagos on Tuesday, 26 June 2018, Uzoma Dozie, CEO of Diamond Bank said that the program is aimed at inspiring, encouraging, mentoring and supporting budding entrepreneurs with basic skills required to _DSC3690build, grow and manage a business.

He stated that BET 7, with the theme, “Innovation and Social Impact”, is aimed at taking the programme beyond the classrooms by leveraging technology to share the experiences of the young entrepreneurs who have passed through the BET program with the world to inspire, motivate and challenge other entrepreneurs in Nigeria to be innovative and creative.

Peter Bamkole, the Director of the EDC said that the centre has been a technical partner of Diamond Bank since the inception of the BET program seven years ago, emphasising that the EDC was responsible for the conceptualization as well as the implementation of the entire project from the selection of candidates till the final stages where the winners emerged.

On the impact of the EDC/ Diamond Bank Partnership, Bamkole said, “Diamond Bank understands that the basic challenges of potential entrepreneurs do not end with funding and mentorship. The Bank has therefore gone further to train the entrepreneurs on the basics of growing, managing and sustaining a business as well as giving them acce_DSC3754ss to grants in finance and candid advice. Grooming 50 smart young business people every year would definitely contribute positively to the economy of the Nation by spinning the wheel of a positive change.”

Chioma Afe, Head, Corporate Communications, Diamond Bank Plc said that apart from the over One hundred and Five million (N105,000,000) cash prizes given out to the top five winners of the BET over the past seven years, the Bank has also helped reduce unemployment in the nation by grooming strong businesses that create employment. She further said that the students of the program not only gained from the lectures at EDC but also had opportunity to access grants from international bodies like the Women’s World Banking (WWB) and were also assigned relationship executives to provide special guidance and constant checks and counselling.

Giving guidelines to small business owners interested in participating in the soon-to-be launched BET Season 8, Chioma said, “Prospective candidates must have a viable business idea prior to the application date. At the end of the initial screening, 50 shortlisted candidates will undergo a six months training programme at the Pan Atlantic University’s Entrepreneurial Development Centre. At the completion of the training programme, the best 15 candidates would be selected to undergo a second phase of advisory services where they will be required to present their business models. At the end of the process, the five participants who are adjudged to have the best plans will receive a grant of N3 million each from Diamond Bank to support their businesses.”