Bank Audi held a press conference on Thursday, August 25, 2016, at its headquarters in Bab Idriss, to announce the launching of its new SME Banking business line and its comprehensive array of products and services.
These new SME solutions were designed to better answer customers’ lending and non-lending business needs, from business banking transactions to financing solutions for day-to-day running business needs, as well as business growth and capital expenditure requirements.
Flexible and tailored to meet present and future standards, they include the “TransAct Packages” which will allow customers to benefit from preferential conditions and reward programs while enjoying a long-term relationship with the Bank. They also comprise lending programs which will help them buy goods or raw materials, purchase equipment and machinery, expand or renovate premises, buy franchises or licences, or invest in future plans.
Mr. Marc Audi, General Manager Lebanon – Bank Audi sal, underlined that the need for this specific business line finds its rationale in the fact that “SMEs are the engine of the Lebanese economy”. Indeed, small and medium-sized enterprises in Lebanon constitute over 90% of enterprises, account for around 82% of the employees in the private sector, and contribute to an important share of the GDP. They involve all kinds of businesses – traditional businesses, liberal professions, high-tech startups, etc. – and all business sectors, from trade and services to agriculture, F&B, and many others. “This means that they have a substantial impact on the economy, be it on the levels of job creation, production, specialization or market development.”
Fostering a dynamic SME sector is a priority for IFC across the region, and especially in Lebanon”, said Mr. Mouayed Makhlouf, IFC Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa. “Serving the segment is not only profitable for financial institutions like Bank Audi, but it also promotes economic growth as well as job creation. We are very delighted to establish this partnership with Bank Audi in Lebanon, that would help in raising the SME Banking standards in the country.”
Mr. Hassan Sabbah, Assistant Chief Operating Officer – Head of SME Banking at Bank Audi, emphasized that “the SME Banking business line we are launching today will serve our clients in all regions throughout Lebanon, ensuring proximity and efficacy through our business centres and branch network, thanks to our highly trained staff. Moreover, we focused on developing SME key strengths through innovative and flexible products and programs which make a real difference with the services currently offered on the local market. But besides efficiency, return, and the satisfaction of contributing to developing the economy, we have designed the right infrastructure to guarantee fast and secure processing, and to maintain Bank Audi’s lending portfolio quality standards.”
With this new initiative undertaken by Bank Audi today, the Bank proves, once again, its dedication to make every necessary effort for the development of Lebanese businesses which play a major role in the blooming of the national economy.