Press Releases

IFC Expands Automobile and Consumer Lending in Russian Regions with $84 Million Loan to Promek-Bank

IFC Washington DC
Irina Likhachova

Tel.: +1 202 473 1813


IFC Moscow

Nezhdana Bukova

Tel.: +7 095 411 7555


Rusfinance Moscow

Anna Smirnova

Tel. : +7 095 540 7000 (1016)


September 16, 2005, Samara, Russia—The International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, is providing a six-year, $84 million loan to Promek-Bank, an affiliate of Rusfinance, for automobile and consumer lending operations in the Russian regions. Promek-Bank, a commercial bank headquartered in Samara, was purchased by Financial Company Rusfinance, a subsidiary of Societe Generale Group, in July 2005. In the next few months, Promek-Bank’s operations will be integrated with Rusfinance under the name “Rusfinance-Bank.” IFC’s financing will allow the bank to expand its lending to consumers in more than 30 regions of the Russian Federation, including southern Russia, the greater Volga region, the Urals, and Siberia.

“IFC is pleased to support Rusfinance’s expansion of its consumer lending. By financing a bank with an expansive regional network, we are helping provide many Russian consumers with new financing opportunities and choices when considering significant household purchases,” said Edward Nassim, Director of IFC’s Central and Eastern Europe Department.

Philippe Delpal, Chief Executive Officer at Rusfinance and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Promek-Bank, said, “Rusfinance has been growing rapidly, and IFC’s debt financing will allow us to increase our operations and provide a wider range of loan products to customers throughout Russia, including longer-term loans.”

Jyrki Koskelo, Director of IFC’s Global Financial Markets Department, added, “IFC and the Societe Generale Group have a long history of working together in emerging markets.  This investment in the group’s first company specializing in consumer lending operations in the Russian regions is an important step for us both. This project will increase the opportunities for consumers in regions that are still underserved by high-quality financial products.”

Jean-Francois Gautier, Director of Societe Generale’s Specialized Financial Services Department, said, “Societe Generale sees the acquisition of Promek-Bank as an important step, not just for us, but also for Russia’s banking sector. This transaction allows the bank to leverage its network and reach its potential. It is a vote of confidence in the growing opportunities for Russian businesses and consumers. Promek-Bank focuses on retail customers, but merchants, manufacturers and distributors in Russia are an equally important part of our business and will also benefit.”

Information for Editors.

The mission of IFC is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people’s lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, helps clients improve social and environmental sustainability, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses. From its founding in 1956 through FY04, IFC has committed more than $44 billion of its own funds and arranged $23 billion in syndications for 3,143 companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s worldwide committed portfolio as of FY04 was $17.9 billion for its own account and $5.5 billion held for participants in loan syndications.

Russia became a shareholder and a member of IFC in 1993. Since then, IFC has committed $2.4 billion in the country, including $245 million in syndicated loans, to finance more than 100 projects across a variety of sectors.  IFC’s portfolio in Russia stands at $1.7 billion, and Russia is the largest country exposure in IFC’s global portfolio. IFC’s investments are spread across the country’s most important sectors, including banking, leasing, housing finance, infrastructure, mining, agribusiness, pulp and paper, construction materials, oil and gas, telecommunications, information technologies, retail, and health care.

is the consumer finance subsidiary of the Societe Generale Group in Russia.  Launched in August 2004, it specializes in consumer finance and car loans in dealerships. A fast-growing company, Rusfinance employs more than 900 persons in 15 Russian regions, with a loan portfolio exceeding 100,000 clients. Rusfinance focuses on consumer loan distribution through a direct marketing platform and a network of commercial partners (regional retail networks, federal distribution chains, and car dealerships across Russia).

Promek-Bank (Samara)
is a retail bank and a leader in the regional finance retail market. It offers consumer credit services and serves retail deposit customers. According to Rosbusiness Consulting, it is one of the top 30 retail banks in Russia. Standard & Poor’s  recently upgraded Promek-Bank’s credit rating from “ruB” to “ruB+.” Promek-Bank serves more than 117,000 clients. Its sales network includes 17 outlets in Samara and its region plus than 30 representative offices in other regions, including Russia’s largest cities. As of September 2005, its capital stands at 491 million rubles, its loan portfolio exceeds 3.3 billion rubles, and deposits total more than 2.2 billion rubles.  Promek-Bank is a member of the Russian Deposit Insurance System (register No. 139) and is licensed by the Central Bank of Russia (License No.  1792, 30.05.2000). It was purchased by Societe Generale on July 1, 2005.

Societe Generale
is one of the largest financial services groups in the Euro zone. The group employs 92,000 people worldwide in three key businesses: Retail Banking and Financial Services; Global Investment Management and Services; and Corporate and Investment Banking.  Societe Generale serves more than 18 million individual customers worldwide. It is one of the largest banks in the Euro zone in terms of assets under custody (EUR 1.275 billion, June 2005) and under management (EUR 353 billion, June 2005). It also ranks among the leading banks worldwide in Euro capital markets, derivatives, and structured finance.  Societe Generale is included in the four major socially-responsible investment indexes.