NTB opens Nations Business Centre in Galle for SMEs

Monday, 19 December 2011 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Nations Trust Bank PLC opened another Nations Business Centre in Galle recently, bringing the number of business centres spread across the country to four so far.

Located at the Nations Trust Bank branch at No. 16, Matara Road, Galle, the Nations Business Centre is targeted at Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) and will serve as a one-stop-shop for all SME banking requirements.

Subsequent to the opening of the business centre, a seminar was conducted for SME customers in Galle at the Lighthouse Hotel followed by an evening of fellowship. The SME customers who participated in this business forum included traders, importers, exporters, manufactures and distributors.

The forum was conducted in two parts. The first was a presentation by R.P.L. Weerasinghe, former Commissioner of Inland Revenue and Tax Advisor to the Ministry of Finance on the Government’s 2012 Budget and its implications and benefits for the business community.

The SME customers were given an opportunity to interact and discuss specifics on tax proposals relating to the varied businesses. Customers were also encouraged to take advantages of the benefits offered through the tax proposals to further grow their specific business segments to greater heights.

The second session was conducted by Arunasiri Gunarathne, Assistant General Manager, Business Development Centre and Certified SME Toolkit Trainer, who introduced the customers to the web-based SME Toolkit developed by the International Finance Corporation and managed locally by Dialog Axiata.

This contains a range of very useful financial management tools, which any SME can access and use in improving the way they run their business. The SME Toolkit is also available for customers to access at the Nations Business Centre, where Nations Trust Bank has trained staff to assist customers to use this website, as part of its business advisory service. Nations Trust Bank offers SME customers a range of services including working capital finance, long term financing for business expansion and investments, cash management services, trade services for importers and exporters, guarantee facilities, leasing and factoring solutions as well as special services such as bank at your doorstep and trade document delivery services.

Commenting on this initiative, NTB Director/CEO Saliya Rajakaruna said: “The SME is an important segment for us and we will continuously strive to add value as their financial partner so that they could to drive the economy through the success of their business. Nations Trust Bank will continue from time to time to launch products and services to enhance the financial propositions on offer to the SMEs.”

Nations Trust Bank PLC is one of the fastest growing banks in Sri Lanka today. With the objective of assisting the SME segment towards growth the plan is to open more business centres in a number of geographies and conduct a lot more business forums in the future on specific topics that will benefit entrepreneurs.

The bank now has 48 branches, seven Personal Banking Centres and is the sole issuer and acquirer for American Express cards in Sri Lanka.