The Development Bank of Namibia (DBN) yesterday said as of November 1 it will no longer consider loan applications from Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
The SME Bank is now charged with the responsibility of funding enterprises that fall outside the scope of the DBN threshold. SMEs are defined according to the draft national policy on micro, small and medium enterprises in Namibia, as enterprises or business projects with an annual turnover of less than N$10 million.
As of the beginning of November, DBN will require an annual turnover of N$10 million, with clear indications of viability, in order for applications to be further assessed. DBN’s chief executive officer, Martin Inkumbi, yesterday said the bank is revising its lending focus to better align it to its mandate and Namibia’s current development objectives.
According to Inkumbi, the bank will now focus on infrastructure and larger enterprises, particularly the key sectors and strategic intervention areas, aligned to the Fourth National Development Plan (NDP4) and Growth at Home Strategy.
The realignment is also prompted by growing capacity in the field of SME lending, particularly the emergence of the SME Bank.