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Unity Bank Commits over N30m to Empower NYSC Members

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Managing Director of Unity Bank Plc, Mrs. Tomi Somefun

By Olushola Okunlade

Nigerian lender, Unity Bank Plc has committed over N30 million to empower National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members through the Bank’s flagship Youth entrepreneurship development initiative known as Unity Bank Corpreneurship Challenge.

The sum includes N4 million won by beneficiaries on four separate editions across four states and N10 million won by beneficiaries across the ten states in the latest edition.

The Corpreneurship Challenge, specially designed to targets corps members has produced no fewer than 48 winners across 14 NYSC camps in 13 States and the Federal Capital Territory since inception in 2019.
The Director-General of the NYSC, Brig.-Gen Shuaibu Ibrahim in a recent meeting with the Managing Director of Unity Bank Plc, Mrs. Tomi Somefun commended the bank for providing financial grants to the corps members.
He said the pilot project of the “Corpreneurship challenge” had created opportunities for self-employment and wealth creation and would reduce the number of unemployed graduates.
“My appeal to you is to be determined, remain focused and fan into flame the training that you have acquired for your empowerment, as it would later translate to societal development,” the DG has said. “Be prudent in your spending, avoid indolence and be committed to what the Unity Bank has done for you,” he added.
The initiative was piloted across four locations – Lagos, Ogun, Edo and Abuja – but has now expanded to six other locations including Akwa Ibom, Kano, Sokoto, Enugu, Sokoto and Osun. 

Each of the locations produce winners of business grants of N200,000 for the second runner ups; N300,000 business grant for the first runner ups and a star prize of N500,000 for the overall winners.   
 
The initiative has attracted massive interests and participation among the corps members, as over 10,000 applications have been received over the period.
 
The contestants’ business plans which usually come from any sector such as fashion, fish production, poultry farming, retail chains, piggery, beverages, etc. are assessed on originality, marketability, future employability potential of the product and knowledge of the business.    
 
Speaking during the last edition which held across ten locations, the Divisional Head, Retail, SME Banking and E-Business Directorate, Unity Bank Plc, Mr. Olufunwa Akinmade, said the competition has proved to have a great impact on youth empowerment in the country.   
 
“The Unity Bank Corpreneurship Challenge has a very positive impact, not only for the corps members but for the entire youth population in Nigeria. It is a way to support the young men and women who are just graduating from university to grow.  
 
“You will agree that it is not easy today to come out of the university and get a paid job, and so at this stage, it is good that the corps members imbibe that culture of entrepreneurship, and then with the financial support that they get from Unity Bank and the knowledge that they have acquired through the competition, they will be able to grow from job seekers to employers of labour.”  
 
Mr. Akinmade reiterated that “The grants are not a loan and the winners are expected to channel the funds to profitable ventures to achieve the objectives of the scheme.”  
 
Going down memory lane, Mr. Akinmade recalled that what started in 2019 with a pilot in four states have now expanded to six additional states and is well on its way to achieving national coverage.   
 
He said: “We started Corpreneurship Challenge in 2019, with a launch in Lagos and in three other states which included Edo, Ogun, and Abuja. So, today we have expanded it to ten locations, and it has been hugely successful.  
 
“This is a programme that will stand the test of time, but all we are doing is to support NYSC corps members to start their own business no matter how small and then grow with it. Unity Bank will continue to be part of their journey, to offer them a start-up capital as well as business mentorship.”

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Having A FirstBank Salary Account Can Ease Your Money Problems, Find Out How

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HAVING A FIRSTBANK SALARY ACCOUNT CAN EASE YOUR MONEY PROBLEMS, FIND OUT HOW

HAVING A FIRSTBANK SALARY ACCOUNT CAN EASE YOUR MONEY PROBLEMS, FIND OUT HOW

Olushola Okunlade Writes

“There is always a lot to spend money on, and sometimes the bills can’t wait for the salary to be paid” Tope complained when his wife informed him that they had run out of cooking gas and had to refill.

He had just moved to a new location with his family and the bills seemed to be coming at such speed that he could hardly keep up. Barely three weeks in the new apartment, the electricity bill had arrived.  The new apartment was bigger than the last and their two double-seater cushions left too much space vacant in the seating room. They needed to get a couple more furniture to fill the space. His wife had not stopped reminding him of the car he promised to get, in order to ease mobility for the family.

Everyone has been a Tope at some point in time, and that is why everyone needs a financial partner like FirstBank, Nigeria’s premier and leading financial services brand. FirstBank offers a variety of loan products that can help you ease off the pressure as you work towards meeting pressing and urgent needs, as well as medium-term goals.

FirstAdvance is a digital product tailored for salary Account holders, who have an urgent cash need and would want to access salary advance from the bank. If you have held a salary account with FirstBank for up to two months, you can access 50% of your monthly net salary and as much as half a million naira (N500,000).

A physical visit to the bank branch is not required as you can access it via the FirstMobile (FirstBank’s Mobile banking App) and USSD channels. To access the service via USSD, dial *894*11# from the phone number linked with your FirstBank account. This has proved to be the solution for many people while emergencies arise before payday. There is no point in waiting for month-end before you can take on those pressing financial obligations.

FirstCredit, another digital product designed to cater to non-salaried individuals. All that is required is for your account to have been active and transacting in FirstBank for six months or more to access FirstCredit. It provides customers with quick and easy access to loans to fund urgent transactions. You do not need a smartphone or a physical visit to the bank to get this done as well. This credit facility can be accessed using a mobile phone and the USSD banking code, *894*11#. You can access as much as N300,000 to be repaid within 30 days.

No physical documentation or collateral is required, neither do you need a physical visit to the bank to access both loans. Imagine the confidence that comes with sorting out your bills within minutes and without having to wait till month-end.

Salary accounts should do more than receive your monthly payments from your employer. It should be instrumental in making your day-to-day living easier, and this is what having your salary account with FirstBank can achieve for you. You can get a Personal Loan Against Salary (PLAS) if you have a longer-term project at hand or investments to make. It may be paying school fees for your kids, acquiring assets or renovating your properties, paying rent, taking professional examinations. Customers who qualify can access Up to N50 million based on their net monthly income and rates are competitive while offering long-term and flexible repayments up to 48 months tenor.

Despite all these benefits and ease in access to loans, it literarily costs nothing to open a FirstBank Salary Account.  Zero opening balance, Zero minimum daily operating balance, Zero account maintenance charge, plus you even get your first debit card issued for free.

Truly, it is always “YOU FIRST” from FirstBank.

With a FirstBank Salary Account, you have ‘three less’ things to worry about. Yes, you can gain access to FirstAdvance, Personal Loan Against Salary (PLAS), and/or FirstCredit, either way, FIRSTBANK’ve got you covered.

To get started, simply dial *894*11# or visit www.firstbanknigeria.com

Culled from Nairametrics

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Enabling Dreams With FirstBank ‘December Is A Vybe’

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ENABLING DREAMS WITH FIRST BANK ‘DECEMBER IS A VYBE’

ENABLING DREAMS WITH FIRST BANK ‘DECEMBER IS A VYBE’

Olushola Okunlade Writes

One of the most fascinating quotes of popular British business magnate and author, Sir Richard Brandson is that “A great business is simply an idea to make other people’s lives better.”

This vital nugget aligns with a global view that a critical element of successful brands is the ability to beyond functional products benefits become a visible partner in customers lives, enabling them to live better and happier, aim higher and achieve their dreams.

For businesses, this means seeing beyond financial gains into becoming a true ally and partner who make life worth living. This is a core hallmark of the few enduring global brands and FirstBank appears focused on towing the path.

Beyond business promotion and marketing engagements solely for commercial value, the premier bank in its 127th year is assisting Nigerians to live happier and create awesome memories of good times with cherished ones through some cool initiatives.

Globally, December heralds the holiday season during which people love to celebrate, unwind and relax with loved ones. Though checkered by Covid-19 disruptions in 2020, FirstBank is giving a new expression and meaning to ‘December in Nigeria’ with the high-octane and life-enriching #FirstBankIssaVybe#DecemberIssaVybe campaign.

The campaign which started in 2018 is already generating ripples across the cities with Nigerians across ages anticipating the new trick FirstBank will pull out from the hat this year.

Through the annual FirstBankIssaVybe campaign, FirstBank sponsors an array of the hottest and coolest entertainment platforms across music, fashion, and arts during the month of December, with massive ticket giveaways to premium events.

The goal is to create an enthralling and memorable experience for customers in the Yuletide season as they bond with family and friends, whilst connecting with their favourite superstars.

ENABLING DREAMS WITH FIRST BANK ‘DECEMBER IS A VYBE’ One of the most fascinating quotes of popular British business magnate and author, Sir Richard Brandson is that “A great business is simply an idea to make other people’s lives better.” This vital nugget aligns with a global view that a critical element of successful brands is the ability to beyond functional products benefits become a visible partner in customers lives, enabling them live better and happier, aim higher and achieve their dreams. For businesses, this means seeing beyond financial gains into becoming a true ally and partner who make life worth living. This is a core hallmark of the few enduring global brands and FirstBank appears focused on towing the path. Beyond business promotion and marketing engagements solely for commercial value, the premier bank in its 127th year is assisting Nigerians to live happier and create awesome memories of good time with cherished ones through some cool initiatives. Globally, December heralds the holiday season during which people love to celebrate, unwind and relax with loved ones. Though checkered by Covid-19 disruptions in 2020, FirstBank is giving a new expression and meaning to ‘December in Nigeria’ with the high-octane and life enriching #FirstBankIssaVybe, #DecemberIssaVybe campaign. The campaign which started in 2018 is already generating ripples across the cities with Nigerians across ages anticipating the new trick FirstBank will pull out from the hat this year. Through the annual FirstBankIssaVybe campaign, FirstBank sponsors of an array of the hottest and coolest entertainment platforms across music, fashion and arts during the month of December, with massive ticket giveaways to premium events. The goal is to create enthralling and memorable experience for customers in the Yuletide season as they bond with family and friends, whilst connecting with their favourite superstars. Commenting with much enthusiasm on the year-end campaign, global head marketing and corporate communication of FirstBank, Folake Ani-Mumuney says it’s simply FirstBank creating a ‘Wow December to Remember’ experience for all as a bank for all generations. For her, #FirstBankIssaVybe offers a variety performance; FirstBank is not just considering financial well-being but also the entire well-being for customers. That is why it is enabling opportunities for families to come together to celebrate and enjoy premium concerts, plays, fashion and food, and gave out over 500 mostly VIP tickets per campaign, which cost from N15,000 to N50,000. “We are delighted with our achievements and consider the yuletide a good way of identifying with our customers and appreciating their support. We want them to have the best of fun through this period. Through different expressions, we strive to support our heritage; the value systems we believe in and create opportunities for families to bond across generations. "The carefully curated experiences speak to our ethos, what we believe in and what Nigerians would appreciate. We do not just concentrate like some other brands on specific areas, or just one name; we are true enablers across the raft, and offered variety. We also use the opportunity to further deepen support for arts and job creation. “We also spread the program across the nation with sponsorship of Igue Festival in Edo State, and Calabar Carnival in Cross River State. With our partners, #DecemberIssaVybe, we curate across the country as a whole. We supported Waka the Musical in 2017 which was also taken to Abuja in 2018,” she noted. Meanwhile, the campaign has seen customers treated to fantastic experience in previous editions and many are looking forward to the 2021 edition. From the exciting Alternative Sound 4.0, held at Terra Culture on 5 December, 2019 to the memorable Cardi B live in Lagos by Livespot Concert on 7 December 2019 and the unforgettable “An Evening with FBNHoldings” held on 13 December, 2019 to the pleasure overload of Island Block Party at Oniru Lagos on 14 December, lucky customers and followers of the Bank’s social media handles were given free tickets to have loads of fun! Also, in the bouquet of fun extravaganza was Teni - The Billionaire Experience musical concert held at Eko Hotel on Monday, 16 December 2019 which had many customers thrilled to the finest of tunes by the Billionaire crooner and other guest artistes present. The annual Nativeland music festival at Muri Okunola Park was another event for the yuletide which has since its inauguration in 2016, had top class performances by A-lists artistes. Youth and teenage fashion lovers were not left out; as with Street Souk, they had a feel of current trends and creativity in the fashion industry. The event held on 18 December 2019. Keen on getting exposed to the best and latest designs, wears and fabrics in fashion, then the African Fashion Week Nigeria was another port of call. The event which held 20 – 21 December, 2019 attracted leading players in the fashion industry and deepened the fashion appetite and interest of participants. Building into Christmas was Flytime Rhythm Unplugged, starting on 20 December at the Eko Hotel and Suites. The 5-day music festival event had performances of leading and top artistes in the country. Olamide, Burna Boy, Tiwa Savage, MI, Ycee, Patoranking, Mayorkun, Teni, Zlatan, Joeboy, Fireboy, B Red, Tolani, Jeff Akoh, Oluwadamilola thrilled fun lovers to the best of tunes topping charts not just in Nigeria but the continent. On the wheels of steel was DJ Neptune, DJ Consequence, DJ Obi, and DJ Cuppy. Kizz Daniel’s Toro concert on 26 December 2019 and Tu Face’s musical show on 28 December built up to the wrap-up of the list of December events with Future, the American trap music sensation scheduled to perform live in Lagos. The Future Live in Concert held 29 December 2019 at the Eko hotel. The 80s boy band, New Edition performance at the FlyTime Music Festival in Lagos was also electrifying with Burna Boy Live, Davido Live and many more in action! For plays, the campaign has featured sponsorships of Moremi and Oba Eshugbayi play which focused on highlighted history of Lagos: the struggle over water tax imposed by the British on the people of Lagos and the expulsion of Oba Esugbayi, who stood against the tax, to Abeokuta. The play was from the stable of Joseph Edgar of the iconic Duke of Shomolu Production. Two lucky fans, Tina Ediale and Timilehin Anibaba, amongst others got to see their favourite star Davido Live in Concert; another winner, Azeez Animashaun couldn’t believe his luck when he got a VIP Rhythm Unplugged ticket while some got special treat watching ace actress Omotola Jalade Ekeinde as Esumirin in Moremi The Musical. Some social media followers also scored invitation to parties including Island Block Party, All Black Everything; conferences Golas Grit Grind 2.0; festivals: Native Land, Plamwine Festival; and pop up sales: Mente de Moda. The FirstBank #DecemberIssaVybe and #FirstBankIssaVybe giveaway fest is again set to reward old, new and potential customers with tickets to premium events around Lagos. And Yes, we know you want to attend these events and yes you can. Just follow FirstBank on any of its social media pages – Facebook: First Bank of Nigeria Limited, Instagram: @firstbanknigeria, and Twitter: @firstbankngr – look out for the posts announcing the giveaway and follow instructions to experience maximum party #vybes this season.

Commenting with much enthusiasm on the year-end campaign, global head marketing, and corporate communication of FirstBank, Folake Ani-Mumuney says it’s simply FirstBank creating a ‘Wow December to Remember’ experience for all as a bank for all generations.

For her, #FirstBankIssaVybe offers a variety of performances; FirstBank is not just considering financial well-being but also the entire well-being of customers. That is why it is enabling opportunities for families to come together to celebrate and enjoy premium concerts, plays, fashion, and food, and gave out over 500 mostly VIP tickets per campaign, which cost from N15,000 to N50,000.

“We are delighted with our achievements and consider the yuletide a good way of identifying with our customers and appreciating their support. We want them to have the best of fun through this period. Through different expressions, we strive to support our heritage; the value systems we believe in and create opportunities for families to bond across generations. 

“The carefully curated experiences speak to our ethos, what we believe in and what Nigerians would appreciate. We do not just concentrate like some other brands on specific areas or just one name; we are true enablers across the raft and offer variety.  We also use the opportunity to further deepen support for arts and job creation.

“We also spread the program across the nation with sponsorship of Igue Festival in Edo State, and Calabar Carnival in Cross River State. With our partners, #DecemberIssaVybe, we curate across the country as a whole. We supported Waka the Musical in 2017 which was also taken to Abuja in 2018,” she noted.

Meanwhile, the campaign has seen customers treated to a fantastic experience in previous editions and many are looking forward to the 2021 edition. From the exciting Alternative Sound 4.0, held at Terra Culture on 5 December 2019 to the memorable Cardi B live in Lagos by Livespot Concert on 7 December 2019 and the unforgettable “An Evening with FBNHoldings” held on 13 December 2019 to the pleasure overload of Island Block Party at Oniru Lagos on 14 December, lucky customers and followers of the Bank’s social media handles were given free tickets to have loads of fun.

Also, in the bouquet of the fun extravaganza was Teni – The Billionaire Experience musical concert held at Eko Hotel on Monday, 16 December 2019 which had many customers thrilled to the finest of tunes by the Billionaire crooner and other guest artistes present.  The annual Nativeland music festival at Muri Okunola Park was another event for the yuletide which has since its inauguration in 2016, had top-class performances by A-lists artists.

Youth and teenage fashion lovers were not left out; as with Street Souk, they had a feeling of current trends and creativity in the fashion industry. The event was held on 18 December 2019. Keen on getting exposed to the best and latest designs, wears, and fabrics in fashion, then the African Fashion Week Nigeria was another port of call. The event which was held 20-21 December 2019 attracted leading players in the fashion industry and deepened the fashion appetite and interest of participants.

Building into Christmas was Flytime Rhythm Unplugged, starting on 20 December at the Eko Hotel and Suites. The 5-day music festival event had performances of leading and top artists in the country. Olamide, Burna Boy, Tiwa Savage, MI, Ycee, Patoranking, Mayorkun, Teni, Zlatan, Joeboy, Fireboy, B Red, Tolani, Jeff Akoh, Oluwadamilola thrilled fun lovers to the best of tunes topping charts not just in Nigeria but the continent. On the wheels of steel were DJ Neptune, DJ Consequence, DJ Obi, and DJ Cuppy.

Kizz Daniel’s Toro concert on 26 December 2019 and Tu Face’s musical show on 28 December built up to the wrap-up of the list of December events with Future, the American trap music sensation scheduled to perform live in Lagos. The Future Live in Concert was held on 29th December 2019 at the Eko hotel. The 80s boy band, New Edition performance at the FlyTime Music Festival in Lagos was also electrifying with Burna Boy Live, Davido Live, and many more in action!

For plays, the campaign has featured sponsorships of Moremi and Oba Eshugbayi play which focused on highlighting the history of Lagos: the struggle over water tax imposed by the British on the people of Lagos and the expulsion of Oba Esugbayi, who stood against the tax, to Abeokuta. The play was from the stable of Joseph Edgar of the iconic Duke of Shomolu Production.

Two lucky fans, Tina Ediale and Timilehin Anibaba, amongst others, got to see their favorite star Davido Live in Concert; another winner, Azeez Animashaun couldn’t believe his luck when he got a VIP Rhythm Unplugged ticket while some got a special treat watching ace actress Omotola Jalade Ekeinde as Esumirin in Moremi The Musical.

Some social media followers also scored invitations to parties including Island Block Party, All Black Everything; conferences Golas Grit Grind 2.0; festivals: Native Land, Plamwine Festival; and pop-up sales: Mente de Moda.

The FirstBank #DecemberIssaVybe and #FirstBankIssaVybe giveaway fest is again set to reward old, new and potential customers with tickets to premium events around Lagos.

And Yes, we know you want to attend these events and yes you can. Just follow FirstBank on any of its social media pages – Facebook: First Bank of Nigeria Limited, Instagram: @firstbanknigeria, and Twitter: @firstbankngr – lookout for the posts announcing the giveaway and follow instructions to experience maximum party #vybes this season.

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Polaris Bank Promotes SMEs, Sponsors 2021 Fashion Souk

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Polaris Bank Promotes SMEs, Sponsors 2021 Fashion Souk

Olushola Okunlade Writes

Polaris Bank has reaffirmed its commitment to the promotion and growth of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), especially those operating in the fashion industry in Nigeria.

This position was emphasized in a statement issued by the Bank while disclosing plans to support this year’s Fashion Souk – the niche fair for fashion enthusiasts and businesses convened by Eventful Limited, Nigeria’s pioneer and leading events management company.

The one-day business fair is scheduled to hold on Sunday, December 5th, 2021 at the HarborPoint, Victoria Island, Lagos will provide a platform for over 100 SMEs in Nigeria’s fashion industry who will showcase their creativity, product lines, and economic potentials.

A report by the continent’s development finance powerhouse, Africa Development Bank (AfDB) quotes the global fashion industry as worth over $2.5 trillion with Africa’s share estimated at less than 1% of the total values in 2020, putting Africa’s entire textile/clothing market at more than $31 billion, while Nigeria’s fashion industry is valued at $10 billion according to statistics quoted by Fashion Association Designers of Nigeria (FADAN).

Shedding more light on Polaris Bank’s sponsorship, the Group Head Strategic Brand Management, Nduneche Ezurike noted that Nigeria’s fashion sub-sector has huge and untapped potentials capable of reducing the rate of unemployment in the country.

According to him, “Polaris Bank will be sponsoring one of the best fashion fairs in Nigeria. The fair is curated to facilitate exhibition from four categories of SMEs in the fashion industry including Manufacturers, Retailers, Leather and Jewelry/ accessories with over 120 SME businesses in attendance with expected 2,500+ visitors and buyers expected at the fair”.

He further noted that Polaris Bank remains the preferred Bank in the provision of unique products and services across all the key market segments of the Nigerian economy; serving and impacting the public and private sector; including large and small corporate organizations, SMEs, professional groups, and institutions across; health, education, trade, merchandising, utilities, hospitality, etc.

Commenting on the essence of the SOUK, the Convener, Mrs. Yewande Zaccheaus said: “Eventful Limited has been deliberate in using the platform of the Fashion Souk to create the much-needed road to market for budding fashion entrepreneurs whilst also expanding the target market of the more established designers. The opportunities for scaling businesses have been fully optimised by our vendors through their participation at the Souk as well as the Business Pitch. We are proud to be contributing to the growth of the nation’s economy through this laudable initiative”.

Eventful Limited, is a pioneer of events management business in Nigeria and a Convener of four most-sought-after industry fairs in Lagos namely: The Beauty Souk, The Food Souk, The Fashion Souk, and The Street Souk. The 2021 Beauty Souk holding on December 5, 2021 heralds the
4th edition of the event.

Polaris Bank’s sponsorship and partnership with Eventful to host the Fashion Souk, provides a further boost to budding entrepreneurs in the fashion industry, and by extension accelerates the growth of the SMEs in Nigeria and the nation’s economy at large.

Polaris Bank recently won the coveted BusinessDay Digital Bank of the Year award for delivering VULTe, a niche digital Bank.

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