MOSCOW, RUSSIA, April 21—The International
Finance Corporation has made its first direct equity investment in Russia’s
banking sector, investing in Toribank, a Russian commercial bank that has
gained prominence over the past two years as a rapidly evolving market
player among the larger banks. The IFC investment will support Toribank’s
development and growth, including the expansion of its branch network and
entry into project finance. IFC took a minority stake of 8% as part of
Toribank’s capital increase.
The investment reflects IFC’s strategy of supporting the development of
sound institutions that will contribute to the development of Russia’s
banking sector. To date, IFC has approved more than US$100 million
of investments in Russia’s financial market infrastructure and approximately
US$ 400 million in other forms of investment in the country.
Edward Nassim, the Director of IFC’s Eastern European operations called
Toribank a dynamic, young player in Russia’s banking sector that has made
impressive strides over the past few years.
Toribank, established in December 1991, is Russia’s 22nd largest bank
in terms of assets and one of the country’s most important government
securities dealers and ruble clearing banks. Toribank is also noted
because it established an interbank clearing network that provides
a wide range of banking services to more than 500 small and medium-sized
banks throughout the CIS. The Bank’s assets totaled US$ 810 million
at year-end 1997 and total equity reached US$122 million following a capital
increase of US$40 million in December.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, fosters economic growth in the developing
world by financing private sector investments, mobilizing capital in the
international finance markets, and providing technical assistance and advice
to governments and businesses.
For further information, please contact Julia Zilberman or Maria Kozloski
at IFC in Moscow or Dmitri Philin at Toribank in Moscow.