SDG Goal 9 Challenge: How can we re-imagine solutions to finance the growth of SMEs and trade to unlock prosperity for the world’s communities?

Sustainable Development Goal 9 (SDG 9) is based on three interconnected pillars: infrastructure, industry and innovation. How can we re-imagine these as facilitators of growth and development in a connected world? 80% of world trade is believed to be intermediated through global supply chains. 90% of business worldwide is driven by small and medium sized enterprises, in turn driving up to 60% of employment. 80% of global merchandise annual trade flows rely on financing from financial institutions. Financial services are the lifeblood of commerce, commerce in turn driven by entrepreneurs and small businesses. In developing countries in particular, one of the main barriers to the growth of SMEs is a lack of access to finance, including trade finance; limiting the mobilisation of resources, growth in prosperity and flourishing of communities. Supporting SMEs and trade worldwide and in particular developing markets, plays a key role in helping to advance SDG 9.

Connecting entrepreneurs, traders and small-businesses fosters ecosystems – communities, value chains and markets. For more than 150 years, Standard Chartered has done this across Asia, Africa and the Middle East, for small businesses to the world’s largest companies. We believe we have a role across our markets by supporting and connecting communities, as facilitators of trade, commerce and growth. We have set ourselves ambitious goals to support sustainable development in our footprint.

  • We work with clients to generate positive environmental and social impacts from our lending activities in sectors as varied as infrastructure and microfinance. In 2017, we funded and facilitated $1.2 billion towards clean technology and made $1 billion available to microfinance institutions for onward lending to entrepreneurs in 2016 and 2017:
  • We have mobilised more than USD5 billion to tackle some of the world’s most difficult development challenges through Blended Finance with our Public Sector and Development Organisation clients.
  • We have provided advisory, financing, debt structuring services and policy advice for $25 billion of infrastructure projects, including $4 billion toward clean technology.
  • We aim to bank 8,000 of our clients’ international and domestic networks of suppliers and buyers through banking the ecosystem programmes.
  • Leveraging technology and creating Breeze Biz for SMEs, providing discerning business owners an easy-to-use platform of information and networking opportunities, to help them in the next step of their growth journey.

Standard Chartered is proud to support the Lead2030 Challenge for SDG 9. We will focus the challenge on target 9.3. Increase the access of small-scale industrial and other enterprises, in particular in developing countries, to financial services, including affordable credit, and their integration into value chains and markets.

At the same time, traditional models of banking and financial services are changing, with the potential to fundamentally transform. This transformation is being driven by innovation and technology in an ever more connected world; already changing the way we perceive communities, and certainly the way we should think about financial services.

How can innovation support new ways of banking – from intermediating financing to information, connection and trust (re-broadening the definition of financial services) – to provide more businesses and communities with the means to grow, more quickly? How can we collaborate – on ideas, technology, across industries and borders to serve those who cannot easily access support from banks and financial institutions?

We are looking for solutions that creatively address the need to grow access to banking & financial services to support, in particular, trade and SMEs. In doing so, solutions will be characterised by how they support:

  • Communities: growing the economic vibrancy of communities of entrepreneurs and businesses in and across our footprint.
  • Networks: connecting communities & ecosystems through commerce, information and communication.
  • Participation: creating engagement and mobilisation for the purpose of sustainable development and prosperity.

Standard Chartered has supported trade, commerce and prosperity across Asia, Africa and the Middle East since 1853. How will we do this in 2030’s world? Are you ready to rewire the DNA in Banking? Show us your vision for communities, trade and prosperity in the future. We are proud to support the Lead 2030 Challenge for SDG 9 – Industry, Innovation & Infrastructure.

The winning solution will receive

  • A $50,000 grant from Standard Chartered
  • 12 months of mentorship from a team of Standard Chartered employees and partners. The mentorship team will work to accelerate your solution by assisting with aspects such as:
    • Business strategy
    • Best practices for data collection
    • Monitoring and evaluation
    • Product design
    • Marketing

Application deadline: 5 January 2019

Visit the official link to apply

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