Press Releases


Brigid Janssen
Phone:(202) 458-4698
Fax:(202) 974-4384

GDANSK, POLAND,  March 9, 1999 --- The International Finance Corporation today signed an agreement for an equity investment of approximately US$2 million (equivalent) in Bank Wlasnosci Pracowniczej S.A (BWP), a regional bank in Gdansk Poland that focuses on small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).  

Along with IFC's investment, representing about 17% ownership interest,   Unibank A/S of Denmark and the Danish Investment Fund for Central and Eastern Europe are also investing in BWP.

BWP will use the proceeds from the capital increase, about PLN 30 million in total, to expand its current SME lending activities and to broaden the range of its product and services.  BWP will receive technical support and know-how from Unibank A/S.  

This investment in BWP, which has made impressive achievements, is part of IFC's strategy in Poland to support regional financial institutions, as well as those that work with smaller businesses, said Mr. Harold Rosen,  IFC Director for Central and Southern Europe.  IFC is working in Poland to support private sector investments in the real and financial sectors, privatization and restructuring of state-owned enterprises, and the establishment of new financial institutions, particularly those which target SMEs.

IFC, part of the World Bank Group, fosters economic growth in the developing world by financing private sector investments, mobilizing capital in the international financial markets and providing technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.