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Fidelity bank Partners ImpactHER to Empower 1,052 Female Entrepreneurs with Sales Skills

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HerFidelity launches Apprenticeship Support Initiative

Fidelity bank Partners ImpactHER to Empower 1,052 Female Entrepreneurs with Sales Skills

By Olorunfemi Adejuyigbe

 

Fidelity Partners ImpactHER to Empower 1,052 Female Entrepreneurs with Sales Skills

 

Fidelity Bank, a leading financial institution in Nigeria, has collaborated with ImpactHER to support 1,052 female entrepreneurs across the 36 states of Nigeria in addressing the challenges they face in their small and medium-sized businesses. Through diverse training on digital skills and direct business support, beneficiaries from two cohorts have been able to improve visibility for their businesses and consequently, increase sales.

The training, which commenced in January 2022, has had two cohorts that lasted for four weeks each, covering a myriad of topics such as Digital marketing, building your brand and selling online, etc. The participants were also assisted in putting their businesses on Google Maps, thus allowing customers and the global market to easily find and transact business with them.

 

 

 

 

 

Commenting on the partnership, Osita Ede, Divisional Head, Product Development at Fidelity Bank Plc said, “It has become imperative that female entrepreneurs in Africa are empowered to overcome the lack of digital literacy which impedes them from fully reaping the benefits of the digital transformation underway across Africa, and the world. We believe providing them this access will help them to thrive in their different businesses.”

According to Efe Ukala, Founder of ImpactHER, “Statistically, women and girls are 25 per cent less likely to leverage digital technology for basic purposes, 4 times less likely to know how to programme computers and 13 times less likely to file for technology patents. This therefore highlights the importance of equipping African women with digital skills that could be leveraged to scale their businesses. Let’s not forget that data shows that Africa can add 180 billion Dollars to its GDP by 2025 if we close the e-commerce digital gap.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This intervention is critical as the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor for 2019/2020 highlighted that millions of women worldwide have started businesses over the last five years alone: the highest percentage of these women live in Africa, with approximately 26% of female adults engaged in entrepreneurial activity yet the World Bank confirms through data collected in ten African countries that on average, male-owned companies have six times more capital than female owned enterprises, resulting in monthly profits of female-owned enterprises that are, on average, 38% lower than male-owned businesses.

 

Fidelity Bank is a full-fledged commercial bank operating in Nigeria with over 6.5 million customers serviced across its 250 business offices and digital banking channels. The bank was recently recognized as the Best SME Bank Nigeria 2022 by the Global Banking & Finance Awards. The bank has also won awards for the “Fastest Growing Bank” and “MSME & Entrepreneurship Financing Bank of the Year” at the 2021 BusinessDay Banks and Other Financial Institutions (BAFI) Awards.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The bank boasts of a robust bouquet of products designed to help female-led small businesses run successfully including digital loans and HerFidelity -a proposition comprising exciting features such as capacity development initiatives, access to finance, recognition and networking events, health and wellness programmes, etc, all designed to speak to the yearnings of women.

Clementina Uzogor, the Programs Director at ImpactHER, highlighted the importance of helping women with skills like this to take their businesses to the next level. “At ImpactHER, it is our mission to ensure that we equip these women with tools for their businesses to thrive”, she explained.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She also appreciated Fidelity Bank for working with them to ensure the programme was successful and impactful. “It is important to let you know that this is not the end of this training. We will be deepening our partnership with Fidelity to train and support 5,000 more women-led small and medium sized businesses in the country before the year runs out”, she divulged.

An excited participant from the second cohort, Ms Akinyemi Oluronke, a fashion designer from Lagos underscored the benefits of joining the training for her business, “I’ve been able to build an online presence, people now know my business exists and I get a lot of calls from people who found my business online. I am very grateful for this platform and the overall increase in sales I now enjoy.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

According to Carine Nneka Achokwu, another participant from the January 2022 cohort and CEO of Carine Bakery, a company that produces pastries and cakes in Lagos, Nigeria, “I have been able to increase sales by 40% after using the tools that was provided to me such as “Google My Business” and people have been calling to order from me and I’ve also been able to reach more customers. I am thankful that I can get people to patronize my business just by tapping my phone based on the knowledge I acquired at this training.”

ImpactHER is an impact-driven nonprofit organization that empowers African female entrepreneurs by bridging the gender business financing gap so as to assist them in realizing their full economic potential. ImpactHER has since its inception trained, directly supported with investor-readiness and business scalability skills & tools to over 44, 275 women across 53 countries in Africa.

 

 

 

 

 

This partnership also provides follow-up training and support for the participants and is one of the ways ImpactHER and Fidelity Bank help these women scale up their offerings.

 

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Access Bank Win Against Sonny Odogwu’s Estate As  Court Orders him To Pay N26bn Debt

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Access Bank Wins Against Sonny Odogwu

Access Bank Win Against Sonny Odogwu’s Estate As  Court Orders him To Pay N26bn Debt

Access Bank Wins Against Sonny Odogwu

 

Justice Daniel Osiagor of the Federal High Court, Lagos today upheld the N26 billion debt claim by Access Bank PlC against the estate of the late Ide Ahaba of Asaba, Chief Sonny Odogwu.

Osiagor upheld the bank’s claim after dismissing the preliminary objection filed by the estate of the late Chief Sonny Odogwu challenging the claim of the bank adding that a consent judgement had earlier been entered in which parties to the debt agreed on the payment of N12 billion as full and final payment.

 

 

 

 

The defendants in the preliminary objection added that having taking benefit of the consent judgement, the plaintiff can’t turn around and ask the court to set aside same.

However, Access Bank it it’s claim before the court said the said judgement was floored in that it was delivered by a court that lacked jurisdiction to entertain it at the time it was entered as consent judgement.

 

 

 

 

 

The bank through it’s counsel, Kemi Balogun, SAN said the matter having been placed at the bossom of the Court of Appeal , the lower court which entered the consent judgement as the judgement of the court is Functus Officio ( lacked jurisdiction) and that the only court that has the power to adjudicate on such matter at that level is the appellate court.

Justice Osiagor while dismissing the objection of the defendants nullified the consent judgement entered by Justice Rilwan Aikawa which sanctioned the consent judgement on the ground that it lacked jurisdiction to grant such order as it is functus officio of the matter as at the time he granted the order.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The judge then affirmed the earlier judgement of justice Saliu Saidu which ordered the defendants to pay it’s outstanding indebtedness of N26 billion.

Justice Osiagor however ruled that the payment must be less all amount earleir paid to the judgement creditor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The court also award a cost of N200,000 against the defendants’.

It would be recalled that Access Bank Plc and the late Ide Ahaba of Asaba, Chief Sonny Odogwu, entered into a N26 billion loan agreement when he was alive. The late businessman wanted to use the facility to build luxury apartments to be known as Le Meridien Grand Towers in highbrow Ikoyi, Lagos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In line with global best practices, the bank demanded for collateral security.

Thus Odogwu mortgaged prime properties in Lagos, Abuja, Dubai, and Los Angeles to Access Bank in return for the facility. After the death of the businessman, the mortgaged properties eventually become a subject of litigation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trouble started when the estate of the late Chief Odogwu, reacted angrily to a move by Access Bank to take over the uncompleted property due to the non performance of the loan.

The defendants’ went to town with a statement that the property was not part of the consent agreement reached by both parties, and registered as a judgment of Federal High Court, Lagos. The release signed by the estate lawyer, Chief Anthony Idigbe SAN was published by various media platforms on Tuesday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reacting to the statement, Access Bank said that the Ikoyi property was not the only one that fell within the purview of the November 3, 2015 Federal High Court judgment that ordered the bank to take over the properties used it as collateral in lieu of the N26 billion loan facility.

Other properties include Berendo Property located in Los Angeles, State of California, United States of America, Unit No: FN428, The Fairmont Palm Residence (North), Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Asokoro Shopping weMall, Abuja, 1 Happy Home Street, Kirikiri, Lagos, properties located at Kingsway and Lawrence Roads, Ikoyi Lagos.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Access bank also stated that it is is the successor in title to Diamond Bank Plc following its merger with Diamond Bank Plc.2

The crux of the matter was that former Diamond Bank PlC granted facilities to the Judgment Debtors for the construction of a property to be known as Le Meridien Grand Towers located and lying at 31-35 Ikoyi Crescent, Lagos and registered as No. 17 at page 17 in volume 100 at the Federal Lands Registry, Ikoyi, Lagos. The property is mortgaged to the bank as collateral for the facilities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

However, litigation that ensued over the inability of company, Robert Dyson & Diket Limited to liquidate the facility, Access Bank secured a Judgment in the sum of N26,229,943,035.22 consequent upon a Federal High Court judgment in Suit No. FHC/L/CS/1633/2014 delivered on 3rd November 2015 against Robert Dyson & Diket Limited & 2 Ors (the Judgment Debtors) in relation to the Project Finance for development of a seven-star hotel and residences (“the Project”).

Following the Judgment, Robert Dyson entered an Appeal against the said judgment and a motion staying the execution of same in APPEAL NO: CA/L/1151/2015 – ROBERT DYSON & DIKET LIMITED & 2 ORS. V. DIAMOND BANK PLC & 3 ORS.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Judgment Debtors also filed a Counter-Claim against the Access Bank in the State High Court: SUIT NO: LD/1666CMW/2016 – LEADWAY CAPITAL & TRUSTS LIMITED V. DIAMOND BANK PLC & 2 ORS.

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FirstBank Branch, Head office, not Sealed

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FirstBank

FirstBank Branch, Head office, not Sealed

FirstBank

 

Our attention has been drawn to the news reports online with the conflicting claims that FirstBank branch or/head office has been sealed.

 

Please be informed that the referenced story is a misrepresentation of the facts and misleading. Neither our branch nor head office was sealed. On the 4th of August, 2022, there was an unlawful enforcement at the Bank’s Coomassie House Branch of a garnishee order issued by a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja which order the Bank is still challenging in court.

 

 

 

 

While the Bank has taken appropriate legal steps to deal with the situation, we wish to reassure our customers of unhindered banking services and unique customer experience in all our branches and through our numerous alternative channels.

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RE: Online Publication on Purported Sale of Polaris Bank

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Polaris Bank

RE: Online Publication on Purported Sale of Polaris Bank

Polaris Bank

Our attention has been drawn to an online report on the purported sale of Polaris Bank Limited.

This publication is speculative, deliberately intended to create panic and should be disregarded by the banking public.

 

 

 

Stakeholders may recall the regulatory intervention in the erstwhile Skye Bank by the CBN and the subsequent injection of capital via the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) through a bridge bank process, which birthed Polaris Bank in 2018. The bank has since stabilized its operations following the intervention; improving its balance sheet, customer base and profitability.

Whilst the intention has always been to return the bank to private ownership, such a sale would occur following regulatory approvals with formal notification to all relevant stakeholders. The Bank is committed to ensuring timely communication to the public in such an event.

 

 

 

 

 

The Board and Management hereby reassure its customers, staff and the general public that Polaris Bank remains a stable, strong and credible financial institution, positioned to deliver sustainable value to all its stakeholders.

Signed
Management

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