Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) led by bankero TG Limcaoco has partnered with Bayan Academy to launch a program for the development of local micro and small enterprises (MSEs)
BPI Foundation has launched the BPI Small Enterprise Acceleration Lab (SEAL), with its first track, Small Enterprise Growth Agenda (SEGA) to empowers MSEs for sustainable growth.
BPI Foundation executive director Owen Cammayo said the Ayala-led bank is excited to kick-off the pilot run of the BPI SEAL-SEGA to help address the pressing need for an intervention and spur growth to the MSE sector.
“It’s no secret that the past two years have been extra tough for the entire business community, most especially for the MSEs which faced multiple challenges including the lack of funds to maintain their businesses after a series of lockdowns,” Cammayo said.
BPI SEAL-SEGA is a search for start-up businesses that are ready to develop their viable business ventures. This project is designed to meet the needs of start-up businesses through training, mentoring sessions, and cash grants.
The training program aims to help the startups assess their enterprise’s products, services, operations, and marketing and assist them in developing their start-up enterprise development plan.
The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) reported that 99.5 percent of all businesses across the country belong to the micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME) sector. Micro enterprises account for 88.8 percent, while 10.2 percent are small enterprises.
According to a study conducted by the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) in 2018, this sector continues to struggle in the value chain, primarily due to lack of access to finance, labor and technical and management know-how.
“Startups proved to us that crisis can also be a strong driving force for creativity and innovation. If this new normal has taught us anything, it is harnessing the benefits of digital technologies and transformation that could be an opportunity to create sustainable and adaptable businesses,” Trade Undersecretary of Regional Operations Group Blesila Lantayona said.
Bayan Academy president and chairman Francisco Bernardo said the program is dedicated to helping startups sustain, develop and scale up their businesses.