WASHINGTON, D.C., March 25, 1998—The International
Finance Corporation (IFC) is making an equity investment of US$1.4 million
in Jordan Investment Trust PLC (Jordinvest), an investment company which
will undertake investment banking activities in Jordan.
Jordinvest’s activities will include providing long-term private equity,
investing in quoted investments, underwriting and private placement of
debt and equity issues, corporate finance activities, privatization, and
mergers and acquisitions. The company will also advise and encourage
private businesses to switch from short-term to more appropriate long-term
funding. Although Jordinvest will initially focus on providing these
services in Jordan, it will, where possible, extend its reach to the Palestinian
A pioneer in the Jordanian market, Jordinvest is the first institution
dedicated to investment banking activities. Although the country
has an extensive banking community, private businesses and industries have
little access to long-term capital and debt financing to fund their growth.
Mr. Andre Hovaguimian, IFC’s Director for Central Asia, Middle East and
North Africa said that there was a demand for more sophisticated financial
services because of the recent financial liberalization and regulatory
changes in Jordan. He added that Jordinvest would play an important
role in addressing some of the financial needs of the private sector in
Jordan and in developing its capital markets.
The main sponsors of the project are Gulfinvest International KSE and
TrustHouse Consultants for Finance and Investments. Gulfinvest is
an investment company incorporated in Kuwait. Its primary focus is
to provide development capital to private businesses in the Middle East
and North Africa. TrustHouse Consultants is a financial consulting
firm founded and run by Dr. Mohammed Said Nabulsi, a former governor of
the Central Bank of Jordan.
IFC, part of the World Bank Group, fosters economic growth in the developing
world by financing private sector investments, mobilizing capital in international
financial markets, and providing technical assistance and advice to governments
and businesses. To date, IFC has approved about US$204 million in
financing for 12 projects in Jordan.