“Fresh Thinking on Finance”,
Roadshow for Small & Medium Sized Business with Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland,
Tuesday 20th September, Killashee House Hotel
Network Ireland Kildare branch and North Kildare Chamber Business Women co-hosted the first in a series of roadshows with the Strategic Banking Corporate of Ireland (SCBI) for Kildare business women. The goal of the SCBI is to ensure access to flexible and affordable funding for Irish SME’s. The roadshow, which was free of charge and open to all members’, particularly female entrepreneurs and business women, was held on Tuesday evening the 20th of September, 7.30pm, Killashee House Hotel.
The SBCI was set up in 2014 as a national promotional institution, to enable businesses and the farming community to access vital funding for their businesses. With initial support from KfW, the German national promotional bank and the European Investment Bank, the SBCI has been modelled on a number of successful similar entities across Europe, with a mandate to address financial market failures. Since it began lending in March 2015, the SBCI has lent €347 million to 8,619 SMEs across all regions and a variety of business sectors.
Jillian Mahon, Head of Funding & Strategic Initiatives at the SBCI, said “The roadshow will inform business communities in the various Network Ireland branch locations of the opportunities for business financing through various SBCI products and will feature case studies of businesses who have benefited from this fresh thinking on finance as well as members of the SBCI team who will be on hand to provide advice on potential financing solutions. Guests will also learn about finance products currently available from the SBCI’s partners as well as new product developments to be delivered in the near future which are specifically designed to address the financing challenges experienced by the SME sector. The SBCI’s mandate is to improve access to finance and create competition among finance providers through the delivery of lower cost, innovative, flexible and accessible funding through various SBCI partners including Banks and non-bank finance providers.”
Stella Johnson, Network Ireland Kildare President, said: “The objective of the roadshow is to encourage Network Ireland Kildare and North Kildare Chamber members and all other attendees to challenge the current perceptions around funding for their businesses and help introduce a new way of thinking for financing their businesses.”
Jennifer Forrester, North Kildare Chamber Membership & Events Manager, said: “We are delighted to be working with Network Ireland Kildare as we co-host this event. It is the perfect opportunity for both our member to network with a broader selection of business women in Kildare.”
Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor, who launched the roadshow series in August, stated: ‘”A big focus for the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland is to proactively encourage a cultural change in the business community when it comes to funding their businesses. By taking a fresh approach to funding SMEs in Ireland, the SBCI aims to deliver lower cost loans to Irish businesses and the farming community by working in partnership with the banking system and other finance providers. I am delighted that SCBI are partnering with Network Ireland as this organisation’s ethos and mission in supporting female entrepreneurs and business women is hugely important to me. I would encourage SME’s or future entrepreneurs to attend these informative roadshows.”
The Credit Review Office also spoke at the event, informing guests on credit ratings and how to get this information. Fiona O’ Loughlin, TD, addressed the audience on her experiences as a woman in business.