Business women in Malawi are faced with a number of challenges that directly impact on the development of their businesses. Malawi’s population comprises 52% women and 48% men. Most of the women are self employed compared to those who are employed in the formal sector. Women have a low representation in the banking sector. Only 17% of Malawian women are currently banked and just a few women who own businesses have access to bank credit.

Most women entrepreneurs lack business management skills, don’t have proper collateral for loans and as such their businesses fail to grow. In June 2008 NBS Bank in collaboration with IFC, started a Gender Entrepreneurship Markets program focusing on making women in business bankable.

Women in business are faced with a number of issues that directly impact on the development of their businesses. These issues have been addressed in this Strategic Business Plan.

Limited access to finance
Risk Aversion
Lack of collateral
Low financial and business skills
High cost of funds
Acute shortages of foreign exchange and reduced trading margin

NBS Bank in conjunction with IFC trained women having objectives as follows;

To improve women’s skills relating to business planning, financial planning, product marketing and financial management
To increase women’s chances to access finance i.e exposing them to banking requirements and the whole essence of banker/customer relationship
To enable entrepreneurs to offer better customer experience.

PRODUCTS AND SERVICES FOR WOMEN

In order to develop the women market further, NBS Bank has set up a section solely for women in business. The section has come up with products and services specifically for women.

DEPOSIT PRODUCTS

Chiperegano loan

This is an investment deposit product for a group of 5 to 10 women contributing to one account.
Targets women associations and groups who would like to raise funds for business

Features

Minimum balance of K5,000
No limit and withdrawals
No service fee
Competitive Interest accrued on monthly balance and capitalized bi annually
Available in all branches

Benefits

Opportunity to receive business training
Access to chiperegano loans up to 150% of chiperegano deposit
Easy and economical to form and maintain
Acts as a networking forum
Competitive interest rates

Personal Savings Plan

Contract deposit account whereby women who want to raise a certain sum of money contribute a fixed amount monthly to this account until the targeted amount is reached
Save for a wedding, holiday, tertiary education for kids, start up capital and retirement

Features

The term depends on need and amount to be raised
Competitive interest rate calculated on monthly balance and capitalized quarterly
No service fee
Minimum of 6 months and maximum of 5 years
Available to all branches

Benefits

Networking opportunities with other women
Training opportunities
Collateral for a SME loan

Business Savings Account

This is a savings account for women in business. Its opened in a business name

Features

Minimum of K10,000
Interest calculated on monthly balance
Competitive interest rate

Benefits

Training opportunities
Networking opportunities
Access to SME loans

Current Account

Features

Same as the generic current account

Benefits

Training opportunities
Networking opportunities
Access to SME loans and overdrafts

CREDIT PRODUCTS

Chiperegano loan

This is an investment deposit product for a group of 5 to 10 women contributing to one account.
Targets women associations and groups who would like to raise funds for business

Features

Minimum balance of K5,000
No limit and withdrawals
No service fee
Competitive Interest accrued on monthly balance and capitalized bi annually
Available in all branches

Benefits

Opportunity to receive business training
Access to chiperegano loans up to 150% of chiperegano deposit
Easy and economical to form and maintain
Acts as a networking forum
Competitive interest rates

Order finance

Credit facility that aims at supporting business with working capital to perform on orders

Features

Target women that are in the business of obtaining and fulfilling orders to supply local or foreign
Maximum of 6 months and extension may be considered
Amount based on size of order and working capita
Competitive interest rate
Available in all branches

Customer benefits

Opportunity to receive business training
Opportunity to access working capital

Invoice discounting

This is a form of short-term borrowing that will be used to improve women businesses working capital and cash flow position.

Features

It allows a business to draw money against its sales invoices before the buyer has actually paid
The business drawdown 80% of outstanding sales invoices
Use unpaid sales invoices as collateral for borrowing

Benefits

Allows a business draw funds before the buyer pays

Real lady Insurance premium financing

NBS Bank will provide premium financing for insurance cover which is generally an agreement between the Bank, the insurer and the insured.
This financing involves the Bank paying insurance premiums to the insurers or brokers on behalf of customers.
The customer will then be required to repay the loan on a monthly basis.
This has the benefit of substantially reducing the cash flow burden on the customer since the repayments are spread over a period of time.

Features

Short term facility (maximum of 10 months)
Flat rate is applicable
The facility will be cash covered i.e. 1st instalment is received in advance on both the 30th or 60th day payout.

Benefits

This has the benefit of substantially reducing the cash flow burden on the customer since the repayments are spread over a period of time.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

NBS Bank plc would like to assure all customers that it has business continuity plans that are in place to ensure an appropriate response to any situation that can cause a distruption to the business, including the COVID-19 Outbreak.

 
Read More