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University of Balamand > News > Archive > SME Encouragement

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An SME Encouragement



Students from the Faculty of Business & Management were introduced to the challenges facing the launching of small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Lebanon, and encouraged to develop their own businesses in a lecture appropriately entitled “How to Plan Your Business.”
 
Representatives from Banque Libano-Francaise (BLF) and guests shared their success stories with the audience. Nahwa Husseini, responsible for the Kafalat program and a member of the SME department in BLF, explained that SMEs projects could include business in the agricultural, retail, wholesale, hospitality, real estate, industry, and professional services sectors.

Profitability, said Husseini, is one of the basic objectives in SMEs, and as long as that target is met, the project will be interesting to the lending agency.
The challenges facing SMEs, she added, range from the financing of the enterprise, feasibility studies, cash flows and knowhow. 

One of the ways of providing loans to SMEs explained Husseini, is through the Kafalat program that checks the feasibility of the enterprise in order to provide them with subsidized loans. Since 2000, 950 Kafalat loans have been granted by BLF.
 
In turn, Stephanie Chalhoub, head of products at BLF, presented an overview of the packages provided by BLF, ranging from housing loans and saving plan, as well as educational and car loans.

In the last presentation, Amir Hassoun , manager of Khan Al Saboun, shared with the audience the personal initiative behind “Khan Al Saboun” that turned into a successful business. Mr. Hassoun encouraged students to develop their own businesses and “to be aspiring entrepreneurs.”
 
The key to a successful enterprise, he added, is good quality and good marketing.
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University of Balamand,
Balamand Al Kurah,
Lebanon

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