MUSCAT, 29 May 2019
Bank Muscat, the flagship financial services provider in the Sultanate, in step with its vision 'To serve you better, everyday' and commitment to strengthening support to small and medium enterprises (SMEs), celebrated the graduation of the eighth batch of al Wathbah Academy at the Bank Muscat Head Office. A group of graduates from Muscat governorate successfully completed the 8-month long SME training programme to acquire accredited international certification that will go a long way in helping them realise their entrepreneurial dreams. The event was attended by senior Bank Muscat officials including Ahmed Faqir Al Bulushi, Chief Corporate Banking Officer.
Ibrahim Khamis Al Balushi, AGM - Small & Medium Enterprises in Bank Muscat, highlighted the contributions of the unique al Wathbah Academy programme in strengthening the role of SMEs in Oman’s economic development. He said: “Bank Muscat congratulates all enterprising entrepreneurs who have successfully completed the programme. The diverse sectors chosen for self-employment reflect the determination and commitment of the entrepreneurs to follow their business dreams. The bank will continue to partner with the academy graduates to help them progress in their entrepreneurial career."
Speaking on behalf of the graduates, Zainab Al Harthy, Owner of Al Harthi Pearl/Zaie Oud, thanked the bank for starting the unique learning programme, which has provided al Wathbah graduates a chance to develop their project management and financial management skills, thereby contributing not only to their own entrepreneurship but also to the further progress and development of Oman. Experienced faculty and consultants from Radiant Sail conducted the 8-month long al Wathbah Academy programme, which resulted in the graduates getting an accredited international certification from Project Management Institute (PMI).
The Al Wathbah Academy was launched by the bank in 2013 as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative to equip youth with self-employment skills. A number of entrepreneurs graduate from the SME Academy every year and are successfully following their business dreams, thereby also contributing to the country’s economic growth and development. The comprehensive training programme at Al Wathbah Academy is a launching pad for start-up business initiatives by Omani youth.
Notably, the SME training programme is benefiting entrepreneurs across the sultanate to acquire the required skill set and knowledge to start successful business ventures. The bank’s Al Wathbah SME department offers a comprehensive suite of tailor-made finance solutions and non-financial services targeted at small and medium enterprises. Credit facilities, both short-term and long-term in nature, are available to all sectors. Further support is extended through non-financial services in areas of education, coaching, networking opportunities and workshops.
The unique Al Wathbah Academy programme has benefited many entrepreneurs across the Sultanate and the Bank has successfully conducted programmes in Muscat, Sohar, Salalah and Nizwa over the past five years.