Washington, DC, October 10, 2014-- IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, signed an agreement that will allow Cordaid
of the Netherlands to provide $4.6 million in additional financing to IFC’s
West Africa Venture Fund, focusing on small and medium enterprises in Sierra
Leone and Liberia at this critical time as they battle the unfolding Ebola
The investment will provide an extra boost to the $13.6 million West Africa
Venture Fund, that was established in 2010, as part of IFC’s SME Ventures
program which seeks to fund and train entrepreneurs in some of the world’s
Laure Wessemius Chibrac, Director of Investments at Cordaid, said, "Cordaid
is stepping in to provide funding to an important investment vehicle with
the capacity to reach and serve smaller businesses. We are confident that
this funding will support good SME's and help them through this difficult
Mary Agboli, IFC Resident Representative in Sierra Leone said, "New
funding from Cordaid for the IFC Ventures Fund in West Africa comes at
a critical time. This is not just an African crisis, but a global crisis.
Smaller businesses have been hit hard by the economic impact of Ebola and
need support to maintain operations during this difficult time and position
themselves to contribute to economic recovery when the crisis subsides."
The Fund is already supporting 20 companies, ten each in Liberia and Sierra
Leone and had created 204 direct jobs and about 2000 indirect jobs. Eight
of the companies are run by women, and meet the demand for basic quality
services, such as a commercial bakery, hatchery, logistics and bottled
IFC’s SME Ventures program also operates in the Central African Republic,
Liberia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Nepal and Bangladesh. Through carefully
selected fund managers, IFC’s program helps inform regulatory frameworks
and provides a critical source of investment, expertise and job growth.
Cordaid's investment in WAVF is part of the Stability Impact Fund strategy
to stimulate entrepreneurship in fragile contexts. The fund was established
in 2013 and supports the whole scope of micro, small and medium enterprises
in 12 fragile countries or regions, offering a combination of direct and
indirect investments and conflict-sensitive Business Development Services
The World Bank Group has mobilized a $400 million financing package—including
$230 million announced in August 2014 and an additional $170 million announced
in September 2014—to help the three countries hardest hit by the epidemic
contain the spread of infections, help communities cope with the economic
impact of the crisis, and to improve public health systems throughout West
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development
institution focused exclusively on the private sector. We help developing
countries achieve sustainable growth by financing investment, mobilizing
capital in international financial markets, and providing advisory services
to businesses and governments. In FY14, our investments reached an all-time
high of more than $22 billion, leveraging the power of the private sector
to create jobs, spark innovation, and tackle the world’s most pressing
development challenges. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
Stichting (foundation) Cordaid is one of the largest development aid organizations
in the Netherlands. Cordaid creates opportunities for the world's poorest,
most vulnerable and excluded people, regardless of race or religion, and
provides world citizens with an opportunity to make their voices heard.
Investing in entrepreneurship in developing countries provides people with
an income, stimulates the economy, and strengthens flourishing communities.
Cordaid has been investing in sustainable entrepreneurship for over 16
years. In September 2014, its total investments amount to 60 million euros,
financing over 100 partners in 22 countries.
For more information, visit www.cordaid.org