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SME Bank on Stronger Footing with AAA Rating by MARC

KUALA LUMPUR : 4 September 2019

SME Bank recently has been accorded the AAA rating with a stable outlook from the Malaysian Rating Corporation Berhad (MARC). This acknowledgement confirmed SME Bank’s footing in taking the lead of nurturing and developing the SMEs which is in line with the Government’s socio-economic agenda, Dasar Keusahawanan Nasional 2030 (DKN 2030).

Aria Putera Ismail, Group President/Chief Executive Officer of SME Bank, in a statement said, “With total contribution of 44.2% of DFI financing given to the SMEs, it has positioned SME Bank strongly as a key player in the market.The Bank is continuously engaging with our stakeholders to develop and implement various programmes in bridging the financing gap of the unserved or underserved SMEs. This strategy has ensured the deserving entrepreneurs were not left out from receiving the much needed support that enable them to continue and grow the business. As at to date, SME Bank has approved financing valued at RM30 billion to over 17,000 SMEs.”

Aria added, “The Government has high hope on the future of SMEs in Malaysia. This can be seen in the DKN 2030, where many initiatives will be rolled out to empower the SMEs especially the B40. Using this as our aspiration, and with full support from the Government, SME Bank is stepping up and playing a greater ‘beyond financing’ role for SMEs nationwide.”

“The Bank has been given the mandate to lead the National SME Digital Platform initiative, a game changer for SMEs where it provides a clear demarcation on targeted segments and which dedicated agencies are supporting them, create synergy between players in the SME ecosystem and change the way the businesses are assisted. In a nutshell, the National SME Digital Platform is using the SME’s Life Value (SLV) concept to monitor the financing track records and provide leads on the progress of each SMEs to determine the readiness of the entrepreneurs to migrate upward. With this we are able to create champions at each level of business.” Aria added.

In realising DKN 2030’s main goal that is making Malaysia as the entrepreneurial nation by 2030, SME Bank through its subsidiary, Centre for Entrepreneur Development and Research Sdn. Bhd. (CEDAR) has realigned its functions to ensure the SME entrepreneurs who undertake the training and coaching programs are equipped with the right mindset, knowledge and skills in managing, sustaining and growing their business locally and globally. 

All in all, with the AAA rating awarded by MARC and the new direction undertaken by the leadership of SME Bank, the future of the Malaysian SMEs is expected to be very positive as it strives to be the leading economic growth contributor to the nation.

SME Bank is an agency under the Ministry of Entrepreneur Development (MED).