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SME Bank Xcess 2023 Charts Path for MSMEs Expansion

MITEC Kuala Lumpur 21 September 2023

KUALA LUMPUR: 21 September 2023 – SME Bank officially launched SME Bank XCESS 2023, its largest national-level business matching event dedicated to bolstering the MSMEs community. The 2-day event is specifically crafted to delineate a strategic trajectory for MSMEs to facilitate business expansion, cultivate global networks, and access financing and capacity-building opportunities.

Minister of Entrepreneur and Cooperatives Development, Datuk Ewon Benedick in his officiating speech said, “The Government is highly committed to ensuring the realisation of the National Entrepreneurship Policy 2030 vision. This commitment is translated through the provision of the necessary environment, such as strengthening infrastructure supporting SME development, building the capacity and capabilities of MSMEs, and improving access to financing for MSMEs. The Government fully supports the SME Bank XCESS programme as the 'flagship programme' to show continuous commitment both from the Ministry and its agencies in driving MSMEs growth in a more inclusive and sustainable manner.”

Group President/Chief Executive Officer SME Bank, Datuk Wira (Dr.) Aria Putera Ismail said, "This year, SME Bank XCESS will feature 100 strategic partners including Government agencies, GLC companies, retail and hypermarkets, anchor companies, international buyers, and many more. Highlights for the 2023 edition include the introduction of XCESS Beyond Borders, where MSMEs will be able to connect with 24 buyers from ASEAN countries and India. Until this morning, SME Bank XCESS 2023 has received 80,000 visitors from online platform as well as physical which exceed the initial target of 40,000 visitors.”

Bridging SMEs with Anchors under SME Bank Umbrella Programme

The launch of SME Bank XCESS 2023 also witnessed SME Bank announcing new anchor companies and participants under the SME Bank Umbrella Programme, a unique development programme which provides opportunities for entrepreneurs to embark on business ventures supported by a well-established business model provided by the anchor companies, thus minimising the risk of business failure. Moreover, SME Bank’s wholly owned subsidiary, Centre for Entrepreneur Development and Research Sdn. Bhd. (CEDAR) will provide complementary entrepreneurial coaching for programme participants.

SME Bank is currently partnering with seven (7) anchors under its Umbrella Programme, namely Ramly Food Processing Sdn Bhd, Prowheels Distributor (M) Sdn Bhd, Kara Holding Sdn. Bhd, Chatime Malaysia Sdn Bhd, Bubblebee Sdn Bhd, Bateriku (M) Sdn Bhd, and PETRONAS Lubricants Marketing (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd. The Bank introduced three new anchors for the year 2023, namely, MAIWP Healthcare Sdn Bhd, Glories Gadget (M) Sdn. Bhd. and Siti Khadijah Apparel Sdn. Bhd. at the event, as well as nine (9) programme participants under various anchors.

In addition, two anchor companies under the SME Bank Umbrella Programme namely, PETRONAS Lubricants Marketing (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd and Bateriku (M) Sdn Bhd., announced a strategic collaboration to provide a supply network, "pick-up and drop" service, as well as human capital development for the PETRONAS AutoExpert programme.

Since the introduction of the SME Bank Umbrella Programme in 2019, SME Bank has approved 33 financing applications worth RM14.7 million to the participants. The Bank also supported the anchor companies through financing worth RM75.5 million to seven anchors.

SME Bank Sandbox 2023 Competition

SME Bank XCESS 2023 also witnessed the announcement and prize presentation for the winners of the SME Bank Sandbox 2023 Competition. SME Bank has continuously played a role in nurturing and developing new entrepreneurs in early stages, such as startups and social enterprises, whilst supporting SME entrepreneurs.

The SME Bank Sandbox Competition 2023 aimed to promote and support the development of socially responsible and innovative business ideas that will have a positive impact under the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal 12 (SDG 12): Sustainable Consumption and Production.

“The inaugural competition received 461 entries from two categories, namely the University/College and Open categories. 20 finalists from each of the two categories were selected to participate in a three-day online boot camp session with our subsidiary, CEDAR, and during the final stage, they presented their business ideas to a panel of experienced judges,” Datuk Wira Aria added.

Umorie Technologies Sdn. Bhd, who specialises in deep tech and energy storage solutions, emerged as Champion for the Open Category and took home the RM50,000 winning prize, whilst Biome (Zircochem Resources) and Moms Village Asia Sdn. Bhd. walked away with the 1st runner-up (RM30,000) and 2nd runner up (RM20,000) prizes respectively.

In the College/University category, Greenfuse from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia won RM30,000 as Category Champion, Chiwax Enterprise from Politeknik Sandakan bagged the 1st runner-up spot with RM20,000, followed by ICE from Universiti Sains Malaysia who placed third with RM10,000.

SME Bank XCESS 2023 offers eight core pillars: access to financing, entrepreneur development programmes and services offered by the SME Bank Group; Cross Border Programme that features the ASEAN Access applications; Vendor Development Programme under MECD, Retail and Hypermarkets, Invest Malaysia, Capacity Development, Alternative Financing and the newly introduced, XCESS Beyond Borders.

For more information on SME Bank and its available funding and programmes, visit www.smebank.com.my or call 03-26037700.