First Bank of Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of FBN Holdings PLC and Nigeria’s most valuable bank brand, has again reaffirmed its commitment to the development of the wellbeing of Nigerians through its support for the development of the agricultural value chain in our nation and beyond. Given the economic diversification in the face of dwindling oil revenue, a lot of attention has been given to the business of food, the very crux of the nation‟s economy before the oil boom.
Agriculture has a high potential for growth and economic boom. However, this potential is yet to be fully harnessed as the sector is yet to be given the necessary prominence in building our nation‟s economy. FirstBank realises that support for the agricultural value chain and by extension food, will enable individual and communal self-reliance, self-contentment and self-sufficiency, which will translate to national growth. This is why the Bank is taking ownership of the food space to fully promote businesses that will build the sector and in the long run preserve our teeming population, build revenue for development purposes and create employment opportunities. The effort will also serve to stem corruption and other forms of indiscipline, which threaten economic stability.
FirstBank is set to support the business, art and entertainment of food across all segments of the economy. The Bank is supporting Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) through financing options and advisory services to leverage opportunities in the business of food and create jobs in the food industry that catalyze economic growth. Through unique retail financing options, FirstBank is also supporting the passion, lifestyle and career options of its more upwardly mobile customers, who have a flair for and are making a living from
cooking, fine dining and the art and finesse of food. The Bank is also furthering the entertainment value of food, widely enjoyed by youth and families, by sponsoring events that bring provide opportunities to enjoy food as a united community.
With a rich heritage of over 120 years and footprints across Africa and the globe, FirstBank has been at the forefront of preserving culture in all its locations. Food is an essential part of cultural heritage and the venture into supporting and sustaining the food industry is one of the many ways the Bank is preserving the cultural heritage of its business communities all over the world.
In line with this, FirstBank is partnering with Eventful, a renowned event management company, to host “Fiesta of Flavours‟, a world class food and beverage fair scheduled to hold at Harbour Point in Victoria Island Lagos, from December 4 -6, 2015.
The three-day food and beverage fair will provide an avenue for attendees to fully experience the entertainment, art and business of food. It will showcase the best in local and international cuisine, cutting edge food technology and cooking techniques, as well as the best beverages, wines and spirits the world has to offer. It will also provide management and training seminars, competitions, food demonstrations and performances as well as a live band. Through this, FirstBank has again set the pace for the sustainable development of Nigeria‟s economy.
In a statement by Folake Ani-Mumuney, FirstBank‟s Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications, agriculture was the main stay of the Nigerian economy before the oil boom and there is the need to return to the base of Nigeria‟s industrialisation to stimulate the much needed economic growth at this time. “The Bank‟s venture into the food space takes us back to the basis of our economic development as a nation. FirstBank is set to support agriculture across the entire value chain to promote economic growth and sustainability, especially in the face of dwindling oil revenue” she stated.
According to the CEO, Eventful, Mrs. Yewande Zaccheaus, “We thought it was time for us to own our own events, rather than wait for clients to ask us to plan events and what better way to start than to show case our food and beverage vendors who are at the crux of our event planning business whether corporate or personal”
“There is so much for us as Nigerians to learn, see, feel and experience about our food and we invite you on a culinary journey to discover it. Fiesta of Flavours will show that we have a rich heritage that can be expressed through our food” Mrs. Zaccheaus added.