4,000 SMEs benefit from Tamkeen schemes
Manama, September 22, 2012
Bahrain's labour fund Tamkeen has announced that more than 4,000 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have benefitted from its finance schemes till June.
The company has offered funds worth BD136 million ($359 million) out of a total of BD189.5 million which are available through various partner banks, said a statement from Tamkeen.
These schemes have enabled Bahraini enterprises, especially SMEs to acquire the capital they need for growth and expansion through various Shariah compliant financing solutions.
By the end of June, around 4,200 enterprises, mostly SMEs, benefited from the schemes which included more than 1,000 startups and more than 700 micro enterprises.
The beneficiaries represent a broad cross-section of sectors and industries within the Kingdom which includes: wholesale and retail trade with 32 per cent, the construction sector at around 21 per cent, professional services at 13 per cent, and accommodation and food services at 8 per cent.
The finance schemes have seen steady growth over the past six-months, with the number of beneficiaries increasing significantly per month. From the beginning of the year until June, the total number of beneficiaries has increased by approximately 25 per cent.
Tamkeen offers these finance schemes in cooperation with 9 local banks, which include: Bahrain Development Bank, Bahrain Islamic Bank, BMI Bank, Al Salam Bank, Kuwait Finance House, Khaleeji Commercial Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, and for Micro Financing, Family Bank and Ebdaa bank.
The agreement with the banks aims to bridge the finance gap for many institutions that require the necessary funding for various operational activities.
Tamkeen’s chief executive Mahmood Hashem Al-Kooheji said, "We are very delighted to see such a great response by energetic Bahraini entrepreneurs that seek to evolve their businesses towards a path of prosperity and sustainability."
"This milestone of more than 4,000 beneficiaries is proof of catering to the needs of the private sector to ensure overall economic revitalization and development," he remarked.
Abdulla Al Hamar, owner of Auto Spa Cars Centre and one of the beneficiaries of Tamkeen’s finance schemes, explained the challenges encountered during the process of setting up his business, and how Tamkeen’s support helped him overcome these challenges and develop the growth of his business as the ultimate destination for cars care solutions.
"Turning my business idea to a successful business was not an easy process, but thanks to the support provided by Tamkeen, many of the hurdles we faced were lessened. Tamkeen is making enormous efforts to support the private sector, focusing on small and medium enterprises," Al Hamar recalled.
"Therefore, I would advise Bahrainis who are serious about improving their businesses to benefit from the wide variety of programmes provided by Tamkeen," he added.
Seema Al Saati, owner of a cleaning services office under the name “Bubbles for cleaning”, received financial support through Her Royal Highness Princess Sabeeka bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa Micro Finance Scheme in co-operation with the Supreme Council for Women which is managed by Ebdaa bank in cooperation with Tamkeen.
She commented: “I thank Tamkeen for supporting my project financially and morally through Her Royal Highness Princess Sabeeka Bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa Micro Finance Scheme which has empowered women economically and facilitated entrance into the job market.
"They were constantly following my steps, consulting me and advising me which has opened doors for me to look to the future to be bright and visionary," she added.-TradeArabia News Service