The importance of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) to the growth of the economy was re-emphasized on Wednesday at the 4th FATE Foundation Annual Alumni Conference held in Lagos.
Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat, Deputy Governor of Lagos State, who spoke at the event with the theme: Innovating for Scale, assured the organizers that Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s administration is more committed to the funding of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises.
According to Hamzat, the State Government understood that for the Centre of Excellence to build her economy to her highest potential, the small businesses must be encouraged.
The Deputy Governor stated further that the present administration realized the fact that any nation that wanted to do well must support SMEs and small businesses.
According to him, “there are about 3.2million SMEs in the state, the State government is set to assist businesses to be well structured to help SMEs grow without hitches,” adding that, the state government through the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund has given loan to 4900 beneficiaries to boost their businesses.
Earlier in her welcome address, Adenike Adeyemi, the Executive Director, FATE Foundation, stated that the foundation which was borne out of the decision to tackle the increasing rate of unemployment and poverty among youths was founded in the year 2000 and has graduated about 5400 youths spread across 16 States in Nigeria.
She added that the Annual Alumni Conference was established to create a platform for entrepreneurs to network and share ideas for the growth of their businesses.
Speaking on the theme of the Conference, Chief Executive Officer, SLOT Systems Limited, Nnamdi Ezeigbo disclosed that entrepreneurial mindset, good business system, effective and efficient partnership, strategic positioning and technology are some strategic ways to scale up in business.
He added that every business must have a vision and plan in order to scale up, noting that integrity, hardwork and discipline is key.
He, therefore, call on government at all levels to always engage stakeholders in policy formulations before coming up with policies that affect them.