KUALA LUMPUR: AmBank Group is launching an entrepreneurship challenge to provide SMEs with additional support beyond financial accessibility.
"The AmBank BizRACE is an entrepreneurship challenge aimed at providing SMEs with access to valuable knowledge sharing sessions and development training that covers the area of leadership development, improvements in business model as well as system and structure, and culture transformation.
"Participating SMEs will also have the opportunity to have greater market accessibility from a branding perspective. This move is based on AmBank’s collection of significant data showing that SMEs need access to knowledge, skills, and opportunities to move to the next life cycle of their businesses," the group said in a press release.
According to Christopher Yap, managing director of AmBank's business banking division, Malaysia's SME contribution to the GDP stands lower than average in comparison with other middle-income countries owing to a high failure rate.
"There is already a lot of focus on start-ups and ideation, where SMEs are given the tools to succeed at the early stages of their business. After that, they are often left on their own and not given the support that they really need to continue their journey. This Race will help us identify SMEs who want to grow and scale their business and enable us to provide them the platform to do so,” he said.
The Top 100 applicants will be selected based on their plans for scalability and growth, and invited to attend a series of pitching sessions with an esteemed panel of judges including Google Asia managing director Sajith Sivanandan, CEO of Credit Guarantee Corporation Datuk Mohd Zamree Mohd Ishak, and CEO of IOI Group Datuk Lee Yeow Chor.
Participants who make it to the Top 15 will receive complimentary development training packages and coaching opportunities with experience extrepreneurs while the Top Five will have the opportunity to network with an internationally renowned entrepreneur. The Top Three contestants will win media packages worth RM595,000 for their company.
During the AmBank BizRACE registration period from Sept 19 to Nov 15, a series of five free AmBank BizCONFERENCES will be held national for Malaysian SME CEOs, featuring business leaders from different indusries. A further series of 10 smaller, more exclusive CEO Chat sessions will be held in Kuala Lumpur, also featuring successful CEOs from various industries, to facilitate quality conversations between each speaker and group of up to 50 CEO participants.
For more information on AmBank BizRACE and to register for an upcoming event, visit www.ambankbizclub.com.