Rwanda: BPR Introduces Asset Financing Facility for SMEs and Corporates

Small and Medium Enterprises and corporations seeking to acquire assets for operations now have it easier following the introduction of asset financing by Banque Populaire du Rwanda Plc (BPR Plc.)

The new product by the lender is targeted towards facilitating established SME and corporate firms seeking moveable assets (machinery, vehicles, equipment, etc.) for commercial use and in order to expand their businesses.

The facility, the bank said, will be offered on terms favourable for businesses such as flexibility in repayment period (up to 60 months for new assets and 48 months for used assets aged below 6 years).

The financing covers up to 80 per cent for said assets with the maximum age of assets not exceeding six years.

Among the eligibility terms include full insurance with a comprehensive policy on the acquired asset.

The loan amount is disbursed directly to the seller of the assets or any other beneficiary.

The bank noted that the product was introduced with aims to ensure that businesses have access to assets and equipment that improve their capacity, profitability and performance.

"The asset being financed should be used to improve the capacity and profitability of the existing business," the bank said.

In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, the bank said that they are aiming at enabling businesses to acquire assets that will facilitate recovery from the effects of the pandemic.

The terms of eligibility also include proof of being operational for at least three years with a positive operating profit at least for the last 2 years.

Businesses will be expected to present financial statements at least for the last 2 years as well as evidence of business income (Audited accounts, management accounts, business cash flow statements etc).

The application process also includes review of proof of the value or cost of the asset as well as projections for at least the proposed duration of the loan.

This is one of many adjustments BPR has made in recent months to improve access to financial services for corporate and individual clients.

In May this year, the bank adjusted its unsecured loans up to Rwf 15M from Rwf 6M previously a move that the bank says is in response to consumer demands and market trends.

The bank has also innovated further with the introduction of card-less transactions at Banque Populaire du Rwanda agent outlets (popularly known as BPR Hafi Agents).

With the innovation, BPR clients registered on either mobile banking or internet banking can now use the 'izi cash' functionality without a debit card to generate a one-time password which can be used by the customer or someone they want to send money to at BPR Hafi Agents.

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