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IFC Investment in Grupo Mundial Supports Expansion of Financial Services to Underserved Markets


Contact in IFC:
Lotte Pang

Phone: +1 (202) 758 4290

E-mail:
lpang@ifc.org


Panama City/Washington, D.C., August 14, 2007—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced today that it will invest in Grupo Mundial Tenedora S.A. to support its regional expansion and integration. This will enable the group to deliver insurance and banking services to underserved market segments in Colombia and Central America.

The $70 million investment in Grupo Mundial, a financial conglomerate and an IFC client, will comprise a $30 million equity investment for about a 7 percent stake in the group and a $40 million long-term loan facility. The IFC investment is subject to ratification by Grupo Mundial's shareholder assembly on August 16.


Rodrigo Diaz, CEO of Grupo Mundial, said, “We consider IFC a strategic partner with interests that align with our expansion in the region and to new market segments. We have no doubt that IFC’s support will benefit our company’s future plans as well as our customers and shareholders.”

Atul Mehta, IFC Director for Latin America and the Caribbean, said, "Through our investment in Grupo Mundial, IFC is supporting a truly regional player. Given the fragmented nature of Central America’s financial sector, regional players can bring economies of scale and scope to the smaller economies and increase access to financial services."


Jyrki Koskelo, IFC Director for Global Financial Markets, said, “We are very pleased to support Grupo Mundial through this follow-on investment. As with our previous support for the group’s Banvivienda operations, this new investment is consistent with our strategy in Central America and the Andean region to help develop the insurance and financial markets and promote business between emerging markets.”

IFC has helped develop the financial sector in Panama and throughout Central America. IFC’s strategy is to support institutions that have a regional focus and that seek to access the regional market through physical and financial infrastructure. As of June 2007, IFC’s portfolio in Panama was over $225 million. Its portfolio in Central America is $664 million in 40 projects, with $547 million invested for its own account and $117 million for the account of participant banks.


About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, fosters sustainable economic growth in developing countries by financing private sector investment, mobilizing capital in the international financial markets, and providing advisory services to businesses and governments. IFC’s vision is that poor people have the opportunity to escape poverty and improve their lives. In FY06, IFC committed $8.3 billion, including syndications, to 284 investments in 66 developing countries. For more information, please visit
www.ifc.org.

About Grupo Mundial

Grupo Mundial is a financial conglomerate, with insurance and banking operations in countries throughout Central America including Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama. The holding company was established in 2005. Its main assets are Banvivienda and Aseguradora Mundial. Grupo Mundial has been listed in the Panamanian Stock Exchange since December 2005.