Stanbic Bank and Lafarge have signed a partnership to drive economic growth through the provision of finance to the company's cement transporters
LUSAKA, ZAMBIA – Stanbic Bank and Lafarge have signed a partnership to drive economic growth through the provision of finance to the company's cement transporters.
Under a memorandum of understanding signed today, Stanbic will provide vehicle and asset finance as well trade finance for qualifying Lafarge transporters.
Stanbic Bank Zambia Chief Executive Leina Gabaraane described the transport sector as a vital component of infrastructure development across the country that needed adequate support for it to grow.
He said: “We noticed that transport is such a significant sector of the economy because we are largely a trading economy depending on movement of products from one place to another.
“The sector is by nature a high-volume business with low gross margin and profit margins, leaving a small window of opportunity to realise profit.”
He added that other challenges that affected the sector included changes in commodity prices such as fuel, policies affecting tariffs and duties that impact operations, maintenance and costs.
“As a bank that prides itself in driving Zambia’s growth, we would be failing in our duties if we did not provide an environment where our customers have ready access to financial and business solutions that can help grow their businesses and better manage their wealth.
“And that is why it is with great pleasure that as Zambia’s leading bank, we are partnering with Lafarge Zambia Plc, the country’s longest-standing partner in the construction sector, to provide accessible financial solutions such as Vehicle and Asset Finance (VAF) and Trade Finance such as invoice discounting to Lafarge transporters.”
The facility comes with benefits such as quick turnaround times, flexible repayment terms and insurance at competitive rates with Stanbic Insurance Brokers; no additional collateral is required as the asset financed will itself act as security, he explained.
Access to sustainable financing remains one of the major hurdles for expansion and growth in the transportation sector.
“Starting here will hopefully lead us to next level where we see more and more transporters transportation and transporters coming to us with similar type of off takers to Lafarge and grow Zambia’s transport sector,” added Mr Gabaraane.
And Lafarge Zambia Chief Executive Officer Jimmy Khan said the company’s main goal during the 70 years it has been in existence was to be the leader in the construction sector while also developing innovative products and services that ‘make building of people’s dream homes a reality.’
“This could not have been achieved if it wasn’t for our transporters who tirelessly ensure that our products reach our customers far and wide across the SADC region,” he said.
“As elaborated by Mr Gabaraane, with the Vehicle and Asser Financing product, transporters will have access to Asset Finance at competitive insurable terms with Stanbic Insurance Brokers.
I want to urge all our transporters to make use of this partnership and access financing for fleet expansion or fleet replacement so that they can continue to provide a safe, reliable and costeffective service to us.”