The Managing Director of Barclays Bank Botswana, Reinette Van Der Merwe, says the bank is not only dedicated to assisting clients to prosper, but is also committed to the Agricultural sector.
Speaking at the official opening of Organic Fertilisers Manufacturers Botswana (OFMB) last week Van Der Merwe said, “It will be remising of me not to mention the importance of Agriculture to the Botswana economy. Key amongst others is the fact that the sector: Plays a pivotal role in economic diversification; employment creation; addresses import substitution; and promotes food security and self-reliance.” Barclays Bank, she said, is therefore committed to agriculture and in assisting the country to achieve such objectives, adding that they will continue to seek ways that will provide solutions to address this national agenda.
She did not fall short of mentioning the bank-client relations that she observed while dealing with OFMB, especially its Managing Director, Michael Hallam. “Availability and tabling of regular, updated financial information remains a very important aspect for the Bank; pro-actively engaging the Bank and keeping us up to date regarding your expansion plans; Being open about challenges and things that are not going according to plan, or has gone wrong in your business; Giving attention to detail in your planning and requests to the Bank; regular and open communication; sharing of your passion and dreams,” said the CEO.
Van Der Merwe also said she appreciates Hallam’s constant communication and updates to the Bank.
“I have personally seen it grow from a very limited and, if I may say, simple operation to the state of the art facility we see here today. In your invites to me so often, I could see the passion and pride you had in what you were doing here,” she said excitedly.
Van Der Merwe said as fertilizer makes an important contribution to the soil for growing crops, she believes Banking is important to the Economic growth of Botswana.
She also said OFMB has been their customer since 2014 when they wanted to expand their plant on the back of increasing demand for fertiliser.
Van Der Merwe also said it important for a Bank to be forward looking and to align with the client’s vision and goals, adding that they will continue to seek ways to assist their growth on the African continent.