| James Kon |
WITH a vision of being the leading provider of financial services to micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in Brunei Darussalam, Bank Usahawan has made considerable progress in the financial ambitions of the entrepreneurs for Brunei’s future, with nearly 100 clients and disbursement of up to nearly BND5 million credits.
These latest developments were revealed by Bank Usahawan Chief Executive Officer Udo Schedel during the bank’s Hari Raya open office at the Radisson Hotel yesterday.
Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah attended the event in his capacity as the Chairman of Bank Usahawan.
The bank’s clients, directors and cooperation partners, as well as representatives of other local banks, also attended the annual gathering in celebration of Hari Raya Aidilfitri.
In an interview with the Bulletin, Schedel said, “We have made considerable progress last year. We have nearly 100 client finance ranging from very small credits to large credits. We have opened an office at the Belait District Office, which we visit every Monday from 8.30am-3.30pm. We also have a connection office at DARe (Darussalam Enterprise) headquarters.”
He added, “We have a healthy portfolio, which is very important for a young bank. Overall, we have dispersed nearly BND5 million and we are waiting for disbursement of another BND7 million. By the end of this year, we are confident that we will disperse BND10 million.
“Apart from funding, our model is helping the client and the relation officer work together with the client from the beginning of registering up to the last cash flow projection. The relation officer will also visit the client in several occasions. We also mentor the clients to help keep their records in order, enabling them to come up with the cash flow projection showing the repayment capacity at the end.
“We also give advice on financial issues, and on increasing liquidity by decreasing the amount receivable.”
With 12 locals among its list of employees, Bank Usahawan is looking to hiring more local staff for its future expansion.
The bank’s mission is to improve access to a broad range of appropriate financial services for the majority of Brunei businesses, in a sustainable and efficient manner.