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IFC Supports Peru’s First Specialized Micro-insurance Company Targeting Low-income Segments


In Washington, D.C.
Lotte Pang
Tel: + (202) 458-0952
E-mail:
Lpang@ifc.org

In Peru

Clara Ugarte Perrin
Tel: + (511) 611-2521
E-mail:
Cugarteperrin@ifc.org


Washington D.C./Lima, Peru, February 18, 2009—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is making an equity investment in Protecta, Peru’s first specialized micro-insurance company, that will help expand insurance services to lower-income households and smaller businesses.

IFC’s investment will help Protecta strengthen its capital base and extend its financial products and services to segments of the population that are currently underserved. IFC´s equity stake is for 16.5 percent of the company, while ACP Group holds 83.5 percent.

“Protecta has provided insurance services to more than a half million people in the past year, and with IFC´s support, we hope to expand our reach even further into Peru’s low-income markets,” said Alfredo Salazar, Protecta’s General Manager. “We take great pride that IFC is joining us in this effort, which represents an important milestone in our company’s short history.”

Protecta started operations in February 2008 and has since obtained an “A” rating by Pacific Credit Rating, the highest financial risk rating in the local market. The company focuses primarily on life insurance, and it offers annuities and is developing accident insurance products.

“We are delighted to invest in Peru’s first micro-insurance company, as it complements IFC´s microfinance efforts,” said Atul Mehta, IFC Director for Latin America and the Caribbean. “By expanding the availability of insurance services to underserved markets, Protecta is helping Peruvian families and smaller entrepreneurs better plan their futures.”

IFC strategy in Peru is to promote sustainable development by supporting private sector projects. Priority sectors include the financial sector, microfinance, infrastructure, agribusiness, and tourism. IFC is also developing programs to enhance social benefits of the extractive industry and has extensive programs to help improve investment climate for local businesses. As of June 2008, IFC´s committed portfolio in the country was close to $500 million.

About IFC
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 Protecta
Protecta, which started its operations in February 2008, is the first specialized micro-insurance company in Peru. ACP group is Protecta’s main shareholder and is also the main shareholder of Mibanco, Peru’s leading specialized microfinance institution. Protecta's current main product lines include: (i) life insurance associated to loan portfolios of financial institutions; and (ii) life insurance for micro-entrepreneurs' spouses.