Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) last Saturday organized a one-day workshop at the Kimbima Hotel, Aberdeen in Freetown, to chart the way forward on the risk associated with business in Sierra Leone.
The bank’s head of Client Relationship, Eyram Atsu, said the reason for the workshop “is to foster close relationship with our customers,” and that they would appreciate issues that would be of importance to the bank’s growth.
Speaking on the risk associated with business, the banker said he would limit himself to the most important ones.
He explained that, “credit is one of the risks in business…a business should always honour its debts to its creditors if the cycle of business is to be completed”.
The head of Client Relationship said another risk associated with business that needed to be avoided “is always to get backup suppliers for materials”.
He said, “if even you have been doing good business with one supplier for five or six years, it is always advisable to get a second supplier that you would turn to when the going get tough.”
Continuing he said, “in the IT world, there are always backup in case the system crashes.
Storage facility is another risk that the business people should avoid.” He said the entrepreneur should always make sure that there was enough storage facility and market during the feasibility studies before starting the business or else the risk would be very high and the business might fail.
He said another problem was the foreign exchange that was hard to come by.
Mr Atsu explained that, “if the foreign exchange is not enough in the country then one is at risk of doing successful business”.
The banker stressed that if the business enterprise failed to collect the cash of the goods produced, then it would be almost impossible to continue production.
The Head of Client Relationship also spoke on the bank’s responsibilities of providing overdraft to manage short term risk, Letter of Credit, Insurance to their potential customers.
Currently, the Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) is among the top 25 Financial Times Stock Exchange (FTSE) companies in the world. It is in 56 countries with 17 in Asia; 13 in Africa; nine in the Middle East; five in South America and four in Europe.
The bank can boast of 60,000 personnel from about 100 countries.
Mr Atsu encouraged more people to come to the Standard Bank as they challenge and the bank respond; your dreams will be the bank’s vision; the business man seek and SCB guide; also the business has the believe whilst the bank will achieve.
The spirit of the business man will be the challenge of the bank and the business man will be the heart whilst the bank will be the soul.