Leading Colombian bank Bancolombia has unveiled a new platform designed to offer better services to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the country.
Called Negocios Pyme (or, in English, SME Business), the client portal was rolled out on May 15 to offer an overview of the available services offered to SMEs by Bancolombia in addition to a library of informational resources.
“SME entrepreneurs can learn about the news registered in their sector as well as interesting data for decision making,” said Bancolombia in a statement. “In addition, they will find information on recent trends and opportunities in order to grow and strengthen businesses.”
The platform also aims to connect small businesses with various partner companies that can provide services ranging from accounting and payroll to digital marketing and strategic consulting, according to the Medellín-based bank. It added that certain cloud-based services will be made available to clients for free through the portal.
According to Bancolombia, it has 1.4 million SME clients in the Colombia.
Luz María Velásquez Zapata, vice president of People and Pymes in Colombia for Bancolombia, says that the new platform was developed in large part due to the bank continuing to see client demand for better access to non-financial resources.
This lucrative SME business, which drives a large portion of employment in the Andean nation, is an area that various financial institutions in Colombia continue to chase. Banco de Bogotá, which launched a Pymercardo social network in late 2016, has been very active in courting this segment in recent years.
“Today, there are very few elements that differentiate the offerings of the financial sector to SMEs,” said Maria Claudia Zafra, marketing director of Banco de Bogotá, when launching the network. “Therefore, it is necessary to develop strategies — steadily — to provide added value.”
Last month, the Bogotá-based bank also hosted its seventh annual Feria Mundo Pyme (or SME World Fair), an increasingly popular event that Banco de Bogotá expected to draw more than 2,500 people over three days in Medellín.
“The purpose of the Feria Mundo Pyme,” Leonel Rojas, director of the Antioquia region for Banco de Bogotá, told Finance Colombia, “is to generate connections with our current and potential customers, to support business in the Antioquia region, and to support small and medium-sized businesses…with an important academic agenda to give them tools that help them develop their business.”