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KUALA LUMPUR: SME Corp Malaysia expects nearly all small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to utilise digital payment or cashless transactions by 2022. 

SME Corp chief executive officer Noor Azmi Mat Said said the agency is intensifying efforts with banks to offer SMEs seamless banking activities integration and complete interoperability to achieve greater business efficiency and productivity.

“Cashless payment is an initial step to harness digitalisation. RHB Bank Bhd recently introduced application programming interface (API) integration for its Reflex with Financio to automate payments and reconciliation for SMEs,” Azmi said at Enterprise 50 (E50) 2019 Award press conference here today.

“SMEs will have their financial records automated. It also have apps that can take up all transaction data and solve the problem of SMEs when it comes to track record. Hence, it will help digitising a business and open new opportunities to SMEs. Digitalisation is coming, given another two to three years, I would say almost all SME will go into cashless payment,” he added.

The E50 Award 2019 recognises the achievements of SMEs.

Established in 1996, a total of 2,139 companies have been nominated for the awards, with 732 companies selected as the award recipients since 1997. 

It is organised by SME Corp in partnership with Deloitte Malaysia, with the support of the International Trade and Industry Ministry.

Azmi said for the first time, the theme of digitalisation was selected as one of the evaluation criteria. It gives a bonus mark to the companies adopting the element.

“This theme is in line with the government’s aspiration to encourage digitalisation among SMEs for them to remain relevant,” he said.

SME Corp received 100 applications this year, with 78 companies meeting the E50 Award criteria such as SME Competitiveness Rating for Enhancement.

“They have undergone a rigorous assessment process based on various parameters which include management process, innovation and technology adoption,” he said.

Starting this year, as a value add to the 21st E50 edition since its inception, all award recipients received a report card identifying their strengths and weaknesses by Deloitte.

The top 10 winners of the award were unveiled tonight (Thursday).

Ideal Healthcare Sdn Bhd (IHSB), owned by Datuk Dr Haminnuddin Abd Hamid, was named this year’s top recipient for its outstanding achievement and leading a consumable products namely urology, anesthesia, infusion or transfusion products, respiratory care, gastroenterology and procedure sets.

IHSB has become one of three major suppliers of medical disposable products to the Health Ministry.

For the past five years, the company achieved average yearly sales growth of 10 per cent, buoyed by higher international sales.

The other top 10 recipients of the E50 award this year were Alypz Sdn Bhd, Asia Food & Beverage Sdn Bhd, EPE Switchgear (M) Sdn Bhd, Fusipim Sdn Bhd, IForte intelligence sdn Bhd, Maxwell Pharma Sdn Bhd, My CO2 (KL) Sdn Bhd, Prof Muhaya Eye and Lasik Centre Sdn Bhd and Velson Packagings Sdn Bhd.