FCMB Partners with House of Tara International

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Ladi Balogun, MD, FCMB

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FIRST City Monument Bank, FCMB, is partnering with the House of Tara International to launch an economic empowerment initiative for women known as the ‘‘Beauty Business on the Go,’’ BBOG. The initiative is aimed at empowering women to become entrepreneurs to enable them realise their aspirations through the platform provided by the project.

FCMB and House of Tara had explained that the BBOG initiative involves the recruitment and empowering of 5,000 women to become beauty representatives. “As beauty representatives, they will be selling multiple beauty brands as a part time or full time business thereby creating job opportunities for themselves. The representatives will be offered trainings, finance, marketing support and other skills necessary to grow their business,” they explained.

The statement added that the project would be executed nationwide and entrepreneurship training would be held in selected cities across the country, which includes Lagos, Port Harcourt, Benin, Enugu, Kano, Kaduna, Ibadan, Ilorin and Abuja. “The project is targeted at professionals in the beauty industry, existing beauty representatives, make-up artists, housewives, unemployed graduates, students and others interested in building a career in the growing beauty industry. In the course of the project, there will be regular conferences and special award nights where the best beauty representatives will be rewarded,” it stated.

Commenting on FCMB’s involvement in the project, Uchenna Mojekwu, head of communications, said the BBOG initiative was another demonstration of its commitment towards encouraging women, especially the youth to discover their potentials with a view to aligning such talents with value-added ventures that would make them contribute more to national development.

According to her, FCMB as a helpful bank and an institution which caters for all segments of the society, decided to use this platform to further engage women. “As catalysts of social and economic development, we believe that by effectively impacting them, they will discover their talent and develop some productive skill. In this way, they will be working towards the building of a sustainable life and society. Apart from the excitement the BBOG initiative will create, it is also an opportunity to effectively engage the participants and provide them with a platform to fulfil their dreams, considering the tremendous impact which the beauty industry has been making all over the world.”

Also Tara Fela-Durotoye, chief executive officer, House of Tara, said, “Our greatest strength has been building on future generation of women who are more informed and equipped with the skill they need to determine their own destinies through training programmes such as Beauty Business On-the-Go.”

The project is in line with one of the bank’s corporate social responsibility focal areas and its value as a helpful financial institution. House of Tara International is a Nigerian-based beauty brand and make-up school.

IMF Lauds Ecobank for Improving Competition

Christine Lagarde, IMF President
Christine Lagarde, IMF President

THE International Monetary Fund, IMF, has recognised Ecobank’s positive steps to avoid risks to financial stability. The IMF in a report on Pan-African Banks said that the growth of pan-African banks was improving competition, driving innovation, supporting financial inclusion, and contributing to economic development and financial integration in Africa.

In addition, the report stated that the rising reach and complexity of these banks pose regulatory and supervisory challenges. The report contained a reference to the governance of Ecobank that referred to the period 2013 to 2014.

According to a statement signed by IMF’s Andrew Kanyegirire, “IMF staff is aware that Ecobank has taken a number of important and appropriate steps to address these concerns to avoid risks to financial stability. The recent news that Ecobank has raised equity capital for the group and announced an equity capital increase to meet regulatory capital requirements in Nigeria are further welcome steps in the right direction.”

The Ecobank Group had in a statement signed by Richard Uku, group head, corporate communications, reaffirmed its financial strength and strong governance as a systemically important banking group in Africa. Ecobank has a total assets of over $23 billion. “As the IMF statement alluded to, in the last six months, Ecobank has raised approximately $1 billion in combined equity and debt capital for its parent company and its business in Nigeria, the largest of the group’s affiliates.”

He maintained that Ecobank had been compliant with regulatory requirements, including those for liquidity and capital, across its network, adding that it continues to be supportive of regulatory reforms that make the African banking system safer, more transparent and more accountable.

— Feb. 23, 2015 @ 01:00 GMT

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