Fazle Hasan Abed is the Founder Chairman of BRAC Bank Limited and the Founder
and Chairperson of BRAC, the largest NGO in the world ranked first by
Geneva-based ‘NGO Advisor’ in 2016 in terms of innovation, impact and
governance has established BRAC in 1972 with the primary objectives of alleviating
poverty and empowering the poor. It operates across eleven countries in Africa
and Asia. During his work with micro-credit financing for the poor, Sir Abed
became aware that there was a substantial amount of small entrepreneur class,
the “missing middle”, with no access to any institutional financing. This realization led him to establish a
full-service commercial bank –BRAC Bank Limited – with a view to focusing
attention to the financing of Small and Medium Enterprises (SME).
Bank is currently into its 15th year of operation. It has pioneered the concept
of small and medium enterprise (SME) Banking. They identified that there was a
big gap in the middle of the banking structure. Something was ‘missing in the
middle’ and they decided to focus there.
we think of the financial pyramid, there are corporate institutions (local and
Multinational) at the top of the pyramid and there are low income individuals
at the bottom. Those at the top are served by banks and other financial
institutions while those at the bottom are served by Micro Finance Institutions
(MFIs), e.g. NGOs. But SME sector in the middle were missing access to necessary
banking services and that is where BRAC Bank came into play.
of course, many other banks have started to roll out similar SME services so
the competition is tough. But nonetheless, BRAC Bank remains the pioneer and
the market leader in this field. As we can see in the pie chart below, SME
Banking account for 39% of BRAC Bank’s portfolio. Hence, it is clear that they
are known as an SME Bank
Bank, being the youngest bank, took a step to break away from usual tradition
and tapped into the true suburb entrepreneurial initiatives. Today, with over
365,756 million of loans disbursed till 2016 from inception, BRAC Bank is
country’s largest SME financier that has made more than four lacs dreams come
Bank’s SME Banking cuts across small, medium and emerging business segments
with customized solutions. With its unique network of 448 SME Unit Offices and
dedicated CROs and RMs, the bank takes financing solutions to the doorsteps of
the SME entrepreneurs in rural and semi-urban Bangladesh.