Small and Medium Enterprise (SME)
The most valuable natural resource of Bangladesh is its people. As a nation we struggled for our independence and now the attainment of economic uplift is the main goal. Micro lenders are working here in the financial field, providing very small amount and on the other hand regular commercial banks have been providing bigger amount of loans to larger industries and trading organizations. But the small and medium entrepreneurs were overlooked. This missing middle group is the small but striving entrepreneurs, who because of lack of fund cannot pursue their financial uplift, as they have no property to provide as equity to the commercial banks. With this end in view-BRAC Bank was opened to serve these small but hard working entrepreneurs with double bottom line vision. As a socially responsible bank, BRAC Bank wants to see the emancipation of grass-roots level to their economic height and also to make profit by serving the interest of missing middle groups. 50% of its total portfolio usually collected from urban areas, are channeled to support these entrepreneurs who in future will become the potential strength of our economy. BRAC Bank is the market leader in giving loans to Small and Medium Entrepreneurs.
SME is an additional and specialized horizon of the bank which serves the bank’s special focus in promoting broad based participation by catering to the small and medium entrepreneur. The network of SME has already been established through out Bangladesh.
For SME loan operation,
BRAC BANK LIMITED has in total 429 unit offices, 67 Zonal office, 14 territory and 1800 Customer Relationship Officers. These CROs work for the Bank to converge clients for getting the SME loan. Once CROs get the loan application and if it is less than 500,000 TK then zonal officer has the authority to approve the loan. But if it is above 500,000 then the CROs send it to Head Office for all necessary approval. After approving the loan then Asset Operation Department starts its work. As the scopes of businesses are growing, the amount of files and disbursement is getting bigger. In May 2009, AOD has processed 67047 files amounting Tk. 32188
Reasons of SME Banking
The main focus of BRAC Bank is to develop human and economic position of the country. Its function is not limited only to providing and recovering of loan. But also try to develop economy of a country. So reasons for this program from the viewpoint of BRAC Bank Ltd. are:
1. Support Small and Medium Enterprise: To support small and medium enterprise, which requires not more than BDT 30 lacs. But in the market, small and medium entrepreneurs do not have easy access to get loans from the commercial banks/ financial institutions. But BRAC Bank Ltd. Provides loans ranges between BDT 3 to 8 lacs without any kind of mortgage.
2. Economic Development: Economic development of a country largely depends on the small and medium sized enterprises. Such as, if we analyze the development history of Japan, the development of small & medium size enterprises expedite the development of that country.
3. Employment Generation: To create employment opportunities in the market. The bank gearing employment opportunities by two ways: Firstly, by providing loan to the small enterprises. Expanding, these businesses require more workers. Secondly, small and medium enterprise (SME) program requires educated and energetic people to provide support to entrepreneurs.
4. Profit Making: SME program is a new dimensional banking system in the banking world. Most of the CROs are providing door-to-door services to the entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs are satisfied by the service of the bank and making profit with guidance of the bank.
5. Encourage Manufacturing: The focus of BRAC Bank Ltd. is to encourage manufacturing by the entrepreneurs who produce by purchasing various types of materials. CRO’s try to educate them to produce material if possible because if they can produce in line of purchase profits will be high.
6. Spread the Experience: Another reason of BRAC Bank Ltd. is to spread the knowledge on the importance of SME banking regarding various businesses. The customer service officer shares their knowledge from various businesses and tries to help the entrepreneurs who have shortage of the gathered knowledge. CRO’s who are the driving force of SME division of BRAC Bank Ltd. also gather knowledge about various businesses and make stronger knowledge base.