From Fred Itua, Abuja
Chief Executive Officer of a leading multipurpose investment organisation, Blue Diamonds, Mr. Raphael Chukwujekwu, has stated that only regulation with a human face can create an enabling environment for small and medium businesses to thrive in the country.
Mr. Chukwujekwu who made this remark at the in Abuja at the unveiling of a new product, Smart Blue Money Mobile App, advised government at all levels not to introduce counter-productive regulations capable of stifling small businesses and killing young people’s initiatives.
According to Chukwujekwu, government can make the environment business-friendly such that small businesses would be able to grow, adding that part of the activities of Blue Diamonds is to provide project financing to young people with viable SME plans.
He said the Smart Blue Money Mobile App helps people to save, invest, manage and grow their income with a view to securing their future.
On other benefits of the new product, he said, “In saving money, it creates a certain level of employment opportunities, because there is provision for agency in the app. Through it, people can be gainfully employed by downloading the app and helping people to transfer money, helping people to buy data, buy recharge cards or airtime, pay for cable subscriptions and electricity bills. By so doing, it reduces unemployment and it adds to the nations GDP. ”
He admitted that government has fared well in terms of encouraging SMEs, urging them to do better which he said can be achieved through more discussions, interface and dialogues.
He recalled that Blue Diamonds which started from a barbing saloon is now worth over N400 million with offices in Abuja, Lagos, PortHarcourt and Asaba.
The Blue Diamonds CEO noted that his company now has a board of trustees made up of credible Nigerians as well as management that sees to its day to day activities.
He, however, expressed the concern that the greatest challenge of operating such business is lack of public trust caused by activities of fraudulent companies who in the past promised so much to the people and delivered very little.
“Part of the challenge is because of people’s past experiences, trust is a key issue, God has helped us, we have been able to pass through every rudiment to come to where we are today.
“In BlueDiamonds we underpromise and we over deliver. In the last 4 to 5 years we have had a successful track record.
“It’s not been easy, God has been helping us because of the clear cut vision and focus that we have, just for one thing- to provide viable financial solutions that guarantees your financial future.
“Through our vision and our core values which is R-E-S-T- Respect, Excellence, Safety and Trust- a lot of people have been able to trust us with their hard earned money because we have been able to keep to our promises,” he said.
Apart from the Smart Blue Money App, other products of the company include Land Banking and Direct Investment Scheme, and Gold-Safe Investment Bond.