Washington, D.C., October 20, 2008—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, and the Bank of Scotland, part of the
HBOS Group are hosting a global summit to discuss innovative ways to increase
access to finance for women entrepreneurs. The 8th Summit of
Global Banking Alliance for Women is being held in London on October 20
to 22, 2008.
As Secretariat for the Global Banking
Alliance for Women since 2005, IFC has been promoting the alliance in emerging
markets to better support women entrepreneurs in developing economies.
This year, the summit welcomes an increased number of participants from
The event presents an opportunity for
member banks operating in developed and emerging markets to share experiences
and lessons learned in accessing the women’s market profitably. Discussions
will revolve around four key topics: integrating women entrepreneurs in
the bank’s strategy, educating women clients to help them achieve their
business goals, identifying opportunities for the women’s market, and
the future direction of the alliance. The alliance will also present the
“GBA Most Innovative Bank of the Year Award” to the member that has found
the most innovative way to reach women entrepreneurs in the year of 2007
Rachel Kyte, IFC Vice President for
Business Advisory Services, said, “ "IFC research demonstrates that
access to finance is one of the main obstacles to the growth of women-owned
small and medium enterprises. Working with GBA members, IFC helps clients
develop customized and innovative financial services for their women customers.
Supporting women entrepreneurs means better business for financial
institutions and greater economic growth for developing countries -- a
win-win situation toward achieving the Millennium Development Goals."
Clare Logie, Director HBOS Women and
Chair, Global Banking Alliance for Women, said, “We
are committed to promoting the women’s
market and are delighted to work alongside IFC and the Global Banking Alliance
for Women in bringing the GBA Summit to London in 2008.”
Since 2005, the overall membership
of the Global Banking Alliance has grown from four to 18, five of which
are from emerging markets, including Egypt, Malawi, Nigeria, South Africa,
Tanzania, and Uganda. This increased interest reflects the growing recognition
of the alliance at global and political levels.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group,
creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives.
We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting
private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory
and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments
totaled $16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous
year. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
About the Bank of Scotland
The Bank of Scotland is the first bank
in the United Kingdom to have a full-time team dedicated to women in business.
HBOS Women was originally established in 2003, under the name
Women in Business, to research, establish,
and communicate the issues and challenges pertaining to women business
owners. The team was rebranded in 2007 to reflect the HBOS Group’s commitment
to women in the U.K. For more information, visit www.hboswomen.co.uk.
About the Global Banking Alliance
The Global Banking Alliance for Women
is a consortium of financial institutions that have successfully leveraged
the women’s market for profit. GBA members collaborate on identifying
and sharing global best practices in the delivery of financial services
to women. Its aim is to create a global community where financial institutions
can come together and share best practices for the growth of women’s economic
empowerment worldwide. For more information, visit www.gbaforwomen.org.