Triumph of hope, courage and commitment
The South Pacific Business Development Microfinance’s (S.P.B.D) 15th Annual Businesswoman Awards ceremony was held at EFKS Youth Hall, Mulinuu.
The presence of Afioga Peseta Vaifou Tevaga, Associate Minister Ministry of the Prime Minister at the ceremony added to its glitter and sparkle while more than 1000 participants/guests including senior government officials, bankers and other important stakeholders came together to applaud the success of women entrepreneurs who have emerged as stars in their chosen fields with the assistance of S.P.B.D.
These women achievers are outstanding examples of how self-reliant women can contribute to the economy of the country besides empowering themselves and ensuring a better life for their family. Their ability to dream and convert those dreams to reality through their entrepreneurial ventures drew well deserved praise from all quarters.
The winners were as follows.
Small & Medium Enterprise Businesswoman of the Year:
Toeafe Falevalu, Lefagaoalii 2 Centre, Savaii
Micro Business Woman
of the Year Award:
Salote Seinafolava, Lotofaga Alasopo Centre
Best Centre of the Year Award: FAGALII B CENTRE
The S.P.B.D mission is centered on the importance of offering an opportunity and ongoing motivation to improve the quality of life of individuals living in poverty, by providing them access to financial services.
In keeping with its mission of helping the underprivileged through its innovative product and services, S.P.B.D has 4 key product offerings. I) SME loans for funding needs of clients with mature and larger businesses. II) Overseas Worker Loan for overseas travel for work by a member. III) Spouse Insurance – a step towards full family protection. IV) Higher Education Loans to enable children of our clients to peruse their dream of getting University and College education, our future products and services will include solutions for mobile money and remittance services.
To quote Greg Casagrande, President and Founder, S.P.BD Samoa, “The excitement of sharing the dreams and hopes of these extraordinary women and to lend all possible support and assistance in helping them to realize their dreams is our chief driving force.
Our microfinance network owes its success to our underlying belief that given the right motivation, guidance and timely access to financial services, each one of our clients can realize her potential and emerge as a winner. Handholding them in their ambitious journey towards socio-economic betterment and their subsequent transformation into successful entrepreneurs is a truly rewarding experience.”
Over the years, since its conception in year 2000, S.P.B.D, besides generating a positive social footprint, has disbursed over WST $94 million worth of microfinance loans and has empowered over 50,000 women to build a better life for themselves and their family.
After having establishing itself in Samoa, S.P.B.D has extended its operations to Fiji, Tonga, and Solomon Islands. S.P.B.D runs a weekly Financial Literacy Program for its clients and their family members in Samoa.
Adds, Ajay Verma, General Manager, S.P.B.D Samoa, “The mission at S.P.B.D is to constantly strive to innovate, anticipate the requirements of our clients and match our offerings to their expectations.
Only that product or solution finds a place in our portfolio which has passed the touch stone of its utility and efficiency in promoting empowerment, delivering economic value and aiding business growth of our clients. We hope that through our endeavor to encourage entrepreneurship and self-reliance in women, our growth will be complemented by a corresponding elevation in the financial status, self-esteem and self-confidence of our clients and promote greater financial parity in the country.”