Eighteen entrepreneurs have successfully completed the NCBA-Strathmore Business School Enterprise Development Programme, marking the end of a 16-week intensive training designed to enhance the competitiveness and sustainability of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The programme, a collaborative effort between NCBA and Strathmore University Business School (SBS), spans various economic sectors and aims to equip SME owners with essential skills and tools.

include the ability to identify and capitalise on business opportunities, foster innovation, and unlock their full potential while ensuring their businesses are socially responsible and viable.

At the graduation ceremony, Tirus Mwithiga, NCBA Group Director, Retail Banking, emphasised NCBA's dedication to supporting SMEs.

"As we celebrate the graduation of the second cohort from the NCBA-SBS Enterprise Development Programme, we reaffirm our commitment to empowering SMEs. At NCBA, we believe in fostering growth and resilience within the business community, aligning with our mission as a trusted financial partner," Mwithiga stated.

"These graduates exemplify the transformative impact of tailored support, inspiring us to continue championing entrepreneurial success.”

The programme is part of NCBA's broader initiative to nurture entrepreneurial success, which also includes sponsoring Strathmore Business School's 3rd Annual Family Business Day.

This event will bring together alumni, founders, successive-generation family members, industry experts, scholars, and future family business leaders to share best practices, network, gain practical skills, and learn from industry leaders.

Caesar Mwangi, Executive Dean Strathmore University Business School(left), Akberet Equbay, NCBA - SBS EDP graduate and Tirus Mwithiga, Group Director Retail NCBA. PHOTO/COURTESY

Caesar Mwangi, Executive Dean at Strathmore University Business School, highlighted the significant impact of the partnership between Strathmore Business School and NCBA on the SME community.

"We are proud of the fruitful collaboration between Strathmore Business School and NCBA in delivering the Enterprise Development Programme (EDP) as well as the Owner Manager Programme (OMP)," Mwangi stated.

"As we celebrate the graduation of the second cohort of the EDP, we witness the tangible impact on the SME community, fostering growth and innovation. Our joint efforts extend beyond education to events like the 3rd Annual Family Business Day, further empowering businesses to thrive and succeed."

Looking ahead, NCBA aims to enrol at least 25 SME businesses for the third cohort of the Enterprise Development Programme, with enrolment commencing on May 21st, 2024.

Eligibility criteria for the programme include being an NCBA customer with an active business account operational for at least six months, operating a business for two to three years with more than three employees, and having an annual turnover of at least Sh3 million.

Additionally, participants must be the primary decision-makers and majority shareholders of their businesses.

In addition to the Enterprise Development Programme, NCBA Bank and Strathmore University collaborate on various initiatives under the Strathmore Entrepreneurship Development and Innovation Centre.

These initiatives include international business trips, networking and thought leadership forums, business training boot camps, conferences, and trade expos, all aimed at empowering SMEs and MSMEs for sustainable growth.