Lagos, Nigeria, November 14, 2012—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group,
today committed a new investment in LAPO
Microfinance Bank, Nigeria’s largest microfinance institution, to help
it expand its services. LAPO is active in serving poor and low-income borrowers,
particularly rural women without access to other financing sources due
to lack of collateral or ability to meet other requirements. Today LAPO
has a total of 700,000 clients and aims to reach 5.0 million within five
IFC agreed to provide an 800 million naira ($5 million equivalent) local
currency loan. This is IFC’s first financing of a national microfinance
institution in Nigeria.
Godwin Ehigiamusoe, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of LAPO,
said, “Through this partnership IFC is helping LAPO expand our capacity
to reach a wider group of clients. Our relationship will help build greater
financial inclusion among a rural low-income client base in Nigeria”.
Solomon Adegbie-Quaynor, IFC Senior Country Manager, said, “IFC aims to
increase access to finance for low-income people through commercially viable
microfinance institutions. LAPO provides a platform to distribute other
tailored services at the base-of-the-pyramid, including micro-health insurance
and environmentally-friendly energy products, such as solar lanterns and
LAPO has enjoyed robust growth averaging 40 percent annually since transforming
into a commercial institution beginning in 2005. Today it serves more than
500,000 microenterprise borrowers, 90 percent of whom are women living
across 26 of Nigeria’s 36 states. Growth has enabled LAPO to lower interest
rates by almost 20 percent, while becoming the first microfinance provider
in Sub-Saharan Africa to use a nationally representative poverty scorecard
to select its clients and track their poverty levels.
IFC is a leading investor in microfinance in Sub-Saharan Africa, with a
fast-growing, well-performing portfolio of equity, debt and advisory projects.
IFC’s portfolio includes 24 microfinance clients across 12 countries in
Sub-Saharan Africa, which have reached over 1.5 million microenterprises
and low-income households.
|IFC, a member of the World Bank
Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively
on the private sector. We help developing countries achieve sustainable
growth by financing investment, mobilizing capital in international financial
markets, and providing advisory services to businesses and governments.
In FY12, our investments reached an all-time high of more than $20 billion,
leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs, spark innovation,
and tackle the world’s most pressing development challenges. For more
information, visit www.ifc.org.|
LAPO Microfinance Bank Limited is a pro-poor financial institution committed
to economic empowerment of low-income Nigerians through creation of access
to responsive financial services on a sustainable basis. LAPO, formerly
an NGO that transformed into a regulated entity in 2010, has successfully
grown from having three female clients in 1987 to more than 700,000 clients
across Nigeria today, mostly women. For more information please visit: