Alinma Bank Signs SME Agreement with KAFALAH

Alinma Bank has signed a cooperation agreement with the Small & Medium Enterprises Loan Guarantee Program – also known as KAFALAH – to provide financing services under the program’s umbrella. The agreement was signed by Mr. AbdulmohsenAl-Fares,CEO of Alinma Bank and H.E. Mr. Ali Bin Abdullah Al-Ayed, Director General of the Saudi Industrial Development Fund and Chairman of the KAFALAH Advisory Board.Also in attendance were H.E.Engr. Osama Bin Abdulrahman Al-Mubarak,the KAFALAH Chairman and Mr. Fahad Al-Semari,General Manager of Retail Banking at AlinmaBank.
Speaking about the agreement, Al-Fares stressed that Alinma Bank had established a special unit to support the financing of SMEs.He also said that KAFALAHwould promotethe SME sector in the Kingdom, assisting business owners in overcomingthe obstacles that often arise when attempting to launch or grow a business. He also noted that since SME workers represent more than 80% of the total workforce in Saudi Arabia, the sector would be of special significance in the future and that Alinma Bank was eager to provide banking and financial services to the sector. Al-Fares further noted that he was pleased that Alinma could partner with KAFALAH in an effort to support the national economy and to address the strategic needs of the Kingdom related to employment of the large numbers of younger Saudis who enter the labor market each year.
Also speaking on the agreement, Mr. Al-Ayed welcomed Alinma’s inclusion and stressed that cooperation between KAFALAHthe bank fell in line with the broader initiatives implemented by the government of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to support development of the SME sector. He likewise noted the important role that the Ministry of Finance has played in investing in the sector as part of its mission to bolster the national economy, and keep pace with growth and change throughout the Kingdom. He further said that he was optimistic about the program and the potential it has to develop the business environment and to encourage banks to finance the sector.  He also noted that since its inception in 2006, the program had produced tangible results and had already made an impact on the economy and on jobs growth.

For his part, Al-Mubaraksaid he was delighted withAlinma joining those banks cooperating on the program. He pointed to Alinma’s strength’s in the areas of service excellence,product variety and geographical reach, all of which would enable it to be of benefit to the SME sector. He also took the opportunity to encourage non-participating banks to join the KAFALAH effort and to be a part of the innovative program through the financing of SMEs.