For its creative efforts towards providing business opportunities for women, Access Bank Plc. has emerged winner of the 2019 GBA Women’s Market Champion Impact Award. The organisers consider the bank as one of those responding to the call to give women chance in the gender equality campaign.
The award, which was organized by the Global Banking Alliance for Women (now Financial Alliance for Women) in Paris, the latest collection contributes to a growing list of recognitions for Access Bank, including the National Women in Finance Magazine’s Outstanding Banking Initiative Awards; the Global Banking Alliance (GBA) Women’s Market Champion Award; CBN Excellence in Women Economic Empowerment Award; National Council for Women Society Nigeria’s Dedication to Women Entrepreneurship Award; CBN Excellence in Women Economic Empowerment Award, among others.
The Group Managing Director, Access Bank Mr Herbert Wigwe, who spoke after the announcement, called for more efforts in women empowerment, adding that Access Bank will not relent in its efforts in creating more success stories for women.
He said, “For sustainable development, women empowerment, including support to improve their socio-economic status, remains a practical, highly-important endeavor. Over the years, Access Bank has enshrined women empowerment into its corporate ethos, the recognition by a prestigious body such as the Financial Alliance for Women and the testimonials of our beneficiaries highlight the success of the bank in this area. Furthermore, we promise to intensify our efforts to build capacity and support women globally with the resources and expertise needed to improve their lives,” he added.
With over 35 per cent women in its growing customer base, the bank has consistently offered innovative solutions and unique products, which include the W Power Loan a discount offering that gives friendly loans to female-owned businesses, and the W Academy, where series of networking and capacity-building programs are held to train and mentor women.
Others are the Maternal Health Service Support (MHSS), a scheme designed to support women with easy and convenient options to pay for medical expenses; and the recently-launched Womenpreneur Pitchaton program, an enterprise-growth program that provides female business owners with access to grants and a mini-MBA from International Finance Corporation(IFC).
Access Bank has successfully financed over 105 families (across Nigeria, Ghana and Rwanda) for medical procedures ranging from IVF treatment, pre-and post-natal care to specialized procedures. With the capacity-building sessions at the W Academy, the IVF fora, and many others, over 216,000 women and 700 families have benefited from the programmes.