Entrepreneurs Urged to Prepare with Strong Financial Plans to Face Post Moratorium amid COVID-19
KUALA LUMPUR – Entrepreneurs are urged to prepare themselves with strong financial plans by making smart moves in managing moratorium financing and facilities offered by financial institutions as Agrobank. They are also advised be innovative and bold to explore new business opportunities to ensure their business continuity and sustainability to facing post moratorium and current situation amid COVID-19.
The statement was shared by two young clients of Agrobank, Michael Chew Heng Hao, Quality Production Manager of Jaya Nets Sdn Bhd and Ramana K. Naidu, Managing Director of Famox Plantation (M) Berhad and their view was supported by Ahmad Shahril Mohd Sharif, Chief Business Officer of Agrobank. They spoke at a webinar dialogue session “Post Moratorium: Are Agropreneurs Ready For it?”(Pasca Moratorium: Bersediakah Usahawan Agro?). The session is the second series of UMBI AGRO and was moderated by Ainul Rofidza Ibrahim, Head of Strategic Communications Department Agrobank on Agrobank Facebook LIVE on Tuesday.
Michael Chew who manufactures and supplies synthetic fishing nets, ropes and twines for the Malaysian fishing industry said, entrepreneurs must own a strong financial plan besides bold enough to venture new business opportunities by taking advantage of the moratorium facility as an injector of new business capital while strengthening and maintaining their existing business position.
“As others, Jaya Nets also took the moratorium facility offered by Agrobank, however we and other entrepreneurs took the advantage of the moratorium facility and strategies into a proper business planning by diverting the extra cash flow to generate new income.”
“Entrepreneurs must be very innovative, smart to reduce cost and have resilience by ensuring there is no cash flow problem, this is important to ensure the company operates continuously and workers wedges are paid. What becomes a problem is when you have the cash flow but you do not have a plan and without a strong plan, the company will be incapable to grow and sustain,” he said.
Giving example of how Jaya Nets started a new business opportunity, he said, taking the advantage of the Malaysian hot weather, the company made the smart move by engaging with the Net Energy Metering (NEM) programme to produce solar energy which is sold into electricity to Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB). The NEM programme is a project under the Sustainable Energy Development Authority Malaysia (SEDA Malaysia) managed by Energy Commission (EC).
He said, the earnings from the new business wing of Jaya Nets has helped strengthen the cash flow of the company where that was how they paid the workers wedges during the movement control order (MCO) enforcement.
Meanwhile, grain corn producer, Ramana who is also an ex-pilot said, the MCO period has brought wisdom to him as he managed to expand his business by starting up a livestock business.
Ramana who decided to start up the new business three (3) weeks after the MCO period was implemented said, he saw the potential of the cow breeding business when he was unable to import corn seeds supply from overseas due to the spread of COVID-19.
“During that time, I realised there is a shortage for imported meat from India and the public was complaining on the shortage. That is where I got the idea to breed my own cattle which I bought them from the locals with the extra cash flow from the moratorium facility provided by Agrobank. I managed to sell up to 400 cattle during the recent Aidiladha celebration,” he said.
Congratulating the efforts of the two agropreneurs, Ahmad Shahril praised the proactive measures taken in managing their finances and making the smart move by venturing into new business heights through the extra cash flow facilities that they received through the moratorium facility provided by Agrobank.
He added that, “I would like to request to the Bank’s customers to re-evaluate their cash flow and commitments and consult the Bank if you need Rescheduling and Restructuring assistance from the Bank after the automatic moratorium ends on 30 September.”
“This is important as we do not want to witness Agrobank customers having to close down their businesses just because of this bitter period which I personally feel can be overcome gradually. If not sure, come to see our bank officers for advice and guidance.”
“Many business experts also analysed that the agriculture and the agro food sector will recover sooner than other sectors, therefore, one has to be smart in managing their business and receive the correct financial consultation,” he said.