Adopting of technology is key to success of SMEs

March 27, 2024

Bombay Chamber of Commerce and Industry recently organised a Conclave on Small Finance: Enabling India’s journey to Amrit Kaal. In his keynote address at the Conclave, Nilesh Shah, Past President, Bombay Chamber and MD & Group President, Kotak Mahindra AMC said, “SMEs play a very crucial role in India’s economy. About 10 years ago, they were contributing 2/3rds of all the profitability of corporate India. Today also they contribute 50 per cent of corporate profitability in India.”

Shah also spoke about the credit schemes that the government has set up for the SME sector and how, due to schemes such as the Credit Guarantee Scheme launched during the pandemic, showed the world how Governments can intervene during turbulent times. He gave examples of SMEs who are doing extremely well in terms of technology adoption and are innovating to ensure that they deliver quality products. All they need is the right financing and leadership to become larger companies permeating the globe rather than remain small companies in India.

In his welcome address Sandeep Khosla, Director General, Bombay Chamber said, “Bombay Chamber’s 6th Economic Survey Outlook noted that access to finance was one of the major challenges faced by MSMEs. So we decided to focus on small finance in this Conclave to deliberate on this challenge.”

The first panel discussion on Small Finance – Challenges and Opportunities was moderated by Gopika Gopakumar, Senior Assistant Editor, Livemint and the panelists included Satyam Kumar, CEO & Co-founder, Loantap; Inderjit Camotra, MD & CEO, Unity Small Finance Bank; Rishi Gupta, MD & CEO, Fino Payments Bank and R Srinivasan, Director, AIRA Consulting. The panel delved into how regulatory changes are affecting funding criteria, how small finance banks look at MSMEs and whether schemes such as the Government’s ECLGS schemes need to be continued.

The second panel discussion was on Evolutionary Trends in NBFC Business Models. The panel was moderated by Anand Mihir, Partner & Leader, Financial Services Risk Consulting, EY India and the panelists were Amit Mande, Chief Revenue Officer, UGRO Capital; Mikhil Innani, CEO, Apollo Finvest and Ashok Dhamankar, CEO, Access to Capital Advisors. The panel discussed the role of new age NBFCs (Non-Banking Financial Companies) and MSME lenders, the customer needs for short-term financing, emphasising the importance of incorporating technological intervention to address these needs, and the need to select the right NBFC.

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