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MoU shared dedication to fostering entrepreneurship

13 May 2024


KUALA LUMPUR: SME Bank Malaysia (SME Bank) entered a significant partnership with Universiti Malaysia Kelantan (UMK) to enhance entrepreneurs' capabilities through Lifelong Learning Initiatives, formalised by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to foster entrepreneurship in the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector in Malaysia.

Datuk Wira (Dr.) Aria Putera Ismail, the President/Chief Executive Officer of SME Bank in emphasizing the importance of education and collaboration in driving MSME growth said,"At SME Bank, we recognize the importance of education and collaboration in fostering MSME growth.

"This MoU signifies our efforts to leverage the academic expertise and resources from UMK to provide tailored solutions aligned with the evolving needs of MSMEs," he explains.

"Supported by the invaluable expertise of CEDAR, a wholly-owned subsidiary of SME Bank that has successfully trained over 80,000 program participants, we believe this collaboration will significantly drive entrepreneurial development forward."

Prof. Dato’ Dr. Razli Che Razak, the Vice-Chancellor of UMK, concurred stressing on UMK's role as a leading educational partner in the field of entrepreneurship.

"This partnership is evidence of our dedication to cultivating a conducive ecosystem for MSMEs to thrive," says Prof. Razli.

"As an entrepreneurial university with a specific focus on entrepreneurship and enterprise studies, UMK is committed to empowering future business leaders. With the combined efforts of SME Bank, we aim to equip entrepreneurs with the knowledge and skills needed to effectively navigate the dynamic business landscape."

This is their fourth collaboration with a local university, where SME Bank's previously collaborated with UiTM, UniSZA, and UUM and this reflect their unwavering commitment to empower and foster economic growth.

“This highlights our dedication to integrating knowledge, education, and innovation with the business landscape, in line with SME Bank's primary mandate as a Development Financial Institution (DFI)," adds Datuk Wira (Dr.) Aria.

Under the MoU, both parties will collaborate on various comprehensive activities, including postgraduate and executive education programs, collaborative research and development opportunities, the use of laboratory facilities, industry linkage programs, training programs, entrepreneurial development, and financing assistance.

The MoU between SME Bank and UMK was signed by the President/Chief Executive Officer of SME Bank Group, Datuk Wira (Dr.) Aria Putera Ismail, and the Vice-Chancellor of UMK, Prof Dato' Dr. Razli bin Che Razak, in the presence of the Chief Strategy Officer of SME Bank Group, Datuk Dr. Mohammad Hardee Ibrahim, and the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic and International) of UMK, Prof. Dato' Dr. Nik Maheran binti Nik Muhammad.

SME Bank is ready to receive strategic collaborations, nurture grassroots initiatives, and dedicate itself to empowering MSMEs and fostering the economic prosperity of the country. For more details on SME Bank's programs and initiatives, please visit, the SME Bank Facebook page, or contact the SME Bank Customer Service Center at 603-26037700.


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