Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are the lifeblood of Africa. They play a crucial role in the continent’s growth – providing employment, stoking new economies and connecting the continent to the rest of the world.

In South Africa SMEs are the heartbeat of our GDP. These companies drive real growth, and it is estimated that they employ roughly 47% of the workforce, with their total economic output accounting for around 20% of GDP.

Our neighbours, family and friends own these businesses and they touch our lives every day, often in small ways but sometimes in grand, immeasurable ways.

The impact these businesses have makes for incredible stories, and it is these stories of tangible, sustainable growth that form part of Standard Bank’s new business banking marketing campaign.

The campaign tagline ‘South Africa banks on business. Business banks on us.’ speaks to real stories about real business and the real, life-changing impact they have on people’s lives.

Delving deeper into remarkable histories

Standard Bank has collaborated with some of its business clients to tell their stories and to demonstrate how they have partnered with them to help them grow. The bank will be delving into the remarkable histories of the businesses, celebrating their resilience. It will also honour the many ways business clients have positively changed, and continue to change, the lives of the people who work for them and the communities in which they operate.

These stories will showcase how these businesses employ people, empowering them and their families, and aiding in their children getting an education. They will highlight how businesses provide the impetus for growth and help lift families and communities out of poverty. In addition, they will drive economic activity and act to combat socio-economic challenges.

These remarkable stories will be unpacked across billboards, in print, online, on radio and on television in the coming weeks.

A reliable partner in trying times

In times of uncertainty, businesses want partners that bring them certainty, reliability and excellence when it comes to service. However, more importantly, they also deserve partners who understand their needs and who are committed to helping them achieve their goals.

Standard Bank supports many of these businesses with banking solutions, trade assistance, market access, transcontinental networking platforms and more. Their business banking offering is an ecosystem of innovative products designed to meet even the most complex needs. They cut across sectors and provide clients with access to funding, expertise and advice, digital integration, trade solutions and insurance coverage.

Standard Bank is proud to have helped businesses remain relevant and thrive to tell their stories. The bank is invested in driving Africa’s growth and knows that being a bank is no longer enough. Standard Bank must become an integral and indispensable enabler of their clients’ aspirations. They pride themselves in partnering with their clients, providing value along their life journey, building and maintaining trust, servicing first and selling second.

The stories which make up the new campaign are testament to this. They demonstrate how finding the right partner can help businesses succeed. They highlight how successful businesses can have an exponential impact on society.

Each day Standard Bank partners with businesses to help them unlock their growth, no matter the economic climate.

That is why ‘South Africa banks on business. Business banks on us.’