SPBD SAMOA CELEBRATES ITS 12TH ANNUAL BUSINESS WOMAN OF THE YEAR AWARDS AND THE DESIGN OF TWO NEW LOAN PRODUCTS
On March 8, SPBD Samoa held its 12th Annual Business Woman of the Year Awards ceremony. Over 1,200 women attended, as well as, the Minister of Finance, Faumuina Tiatia Liuga, and other senior government officials, bankers and other important stakeholders. SPBD Samoa is very grateful for the recognition it has received by all its stakeholders during this time. It was a true celebration of the poverty reduction work and of the people (SPBD staff and members) who are all instrumental in helping to create so many magnificent stories of hope and success.
Since inception in 2000, SPBD Samoa has financed over 44,000 micro-credit loans and disbursed over US$23million. Under its new General Manager, Ajay Verma, SPBD Samoa is now piloting two new products: 1) a seasonal migrant worker (to Aus and NZ) loan and 2) an SME loan product (Small and Medium Sized Business Loan). Both new loan products are currently in their respective pilot phases.
The Seasonal Migrant Worker Loan will help finance workers from Samoa who travel to New Zealand and Australia for a period of approximately 3 months to work. Demand for seasonal workers continues to grow and SPBD provided loans to a small pilot group in December 2012 to go to New Zealand. Further work is required to finalize this product, including the addition of a life insurance product.
The SME lending product will provide small business loans between WST5,000-20,000 (~USD2,000-8,000). We will initially target existing members who have successfully grown their businesses and whose business funding needs exceed the existing maximum micro-credit loan size of WST6,000.