Pakistan's best bank for SMEs 2020: JS Bank
JS Bank does not even rank among the top 10 largest banks in Pakistan, but when it comes to lending to small and medium-sized enterprises, it is up there in the top three by size.
As of December 2019, the commercial bank had nearly 22,000 SME clients. Admittedly, lending to SMEs declined marginally to PRs42.7 billion ($277 million) as many of its customers grew enough to cross the SME threshold, but the firm made up for that by adding more than 5,500 new SMEs to its client roster in 2019.
JS Bank’s focus areas have been clear under chief executive Basir Shamsie. It puts great emphasis on small enterprises led by women, financing more than 2,000 of such businesses and launching a business loan specifically for women entrepreneurs last year.
It has also set its sights on supporting differently abled people in business by introducing a new loan facility.
JS Bank has big ambitions. It wants to hit PRs59 billion in SME lending by the end of 2020, and PRs70 billion next year. It plans to boost its trade business further to add more SME customers, something it started in November 2019. Over the last four months, for instance, 250 SMEs have signed up to take advantage of JS Bank’s trade business. The firm offers a one-window solution by servicing the financing, trade, cash management and payroll. Last year, its trade business saw about $1.93 billion in terms of volume. With such strong emphasis on the SME franchise, JS Bank’s goals are well within its reach.