The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA) has announced a collaboration with supplier diversity organisation Supply Nation to offer a new service aimed at helping Indigenous businesses accelerate growth or simplify operations.
The new offering will combine a tailored suite of financial solutions including a dedicated Indigenous Business Line and Concierge, as well as an new Indigenous Business Education Series that the two organisations will co-develop.
Financial solutions included in the business line include working capital solutions, stream and business overdraft, which CBA - a founding member of Supply Nation - claims will give First Nations business owners flexible, simple and faster access to cash flow.
"First Nations businesses need access to the right financial products and services to enable their business to thrive," says CBA group executive business banking, Mike Vacy-Lyle.
"This new offering gives business owners one point of entry, through the Indigenous Business Line and Concierge, to our team of culturally trained business banking experts which will result in an enhanced customer experience.
"Our Indigenous Business Banking team has a deep understanding of the needs of Indigenous businesses and the challenges they face, ensuring owners have access to the best financial products and services, education and training to support the growth of their business."
Supply Nation’s chief executive officer, proud Awabakal woman Kate Russell, says the Indigenous Business Education Series will provide ongoing support, education and training to First Nations business owners.
"Our engagement with First Nations business owners has revealed there is a need for continued education on topics such as cash flow management, cyber safety, fraud protection, risk, workplace health and safety, procurement and marketing," says Russell.
"The Indigenous Business Education Series is designed to enhance business capabilities and resilience.
"Our new joint offering is the latest in a longstanding commitment to the Indigenous economy."
Founded in 2009, Supply Nation works to connect 4,500 verified Indigenous businesses on its Indigenous Business Direct platform with more than 750 paid corporate, government and not-for-profit members in every state and territory.
"It’s important to Supply Nation that we are inclusive in our offering to the Indigenous business sector, which is why we’re inviting all First Nations businesses to enrol in our Indigenous Business Education Series," says the organisation's CEO.
"Our agreement with CommBank is about giving back to the Indigenous business community."
Commonwealth Bank’s executive manager Indigenous business banking and proud Yankunytjatjara woman, Simone Kenmore, says the agreement with Supply Nation and new offerings are aligned with CBA’s reconciliation vision to build community trust with First Nations peoples and support the growth of Indigenous businesses.
"We understand the importance of reflecting the community we serve and we are deeply committed to supporting the growth and prosperity of First Nations businesses around Australia," Kenmore says.
"We know more First Nations peoples are exploring entrepreneurship across a diverse range of sectors.
"No matter where you are in Australia and what sector you’re in, whether its retail, tourism, healthcare and social assistance, transport, manufacturing and warehousing, our team of culturally trained Business Banking specialists can work together with you to realise your business goals."
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