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IFC, Credo Boost Lending to Micro and Small Businesses in Georgia


In Tbilisi:
Tamar Barbakadze, IFC
Phone: +995 32 223 43 00/01/02
E-mail: TBarbakadze@ifc.org


Tbilisi, Georgia, March 11, 2014—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is helping Credo, one of the leading microfinance organizations in Georgia, increase access to finance for micro and small businesses, especially in poor and rural areas, creating jobs and cutting poverty in Georgia.

IFC is providing Credo with a $4 million loan (or equivalent in Georgian lari), enabling the organization to on-lend to under-served entrepreneurs through its 40 branches across the country. The long-term funding will help Credo grow and expand access to high quality financial services and products, helping lower-income entrepreneurs contribute to the growth of Georgia’s economy.

“Our partnership with IFC is another step forward in our strategy to support new opportunities for micro and small entrepreneurs,” said Ljiljana Spasojevic, Chief Executive Officer, Credo. “This project will help us meet their needs in long-term funding, especially in local currency.”

K. Aftab Ahmed, IFC Director for Financial Institutions and Private Equity Funds in Europe, Central Asia, Middle East and North Africa, said: "IFC is committed to supporting the growth of Georgia’s private sector, the key engine of economic development and job creation, and this project is an important part of this strategy. By facilitating better access to finance for micro and small enterprises, we aim to help improve the quality of life in Georgia, spurring growth.”

Georgia became an IFC member in 1995. Since then, IFC has invested more than $695 million in 57 projects across various sectors and supported regional projects developed in the country. IFC has also implemented a number of advisory projects focused on the development of the private sector.

About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private enterprises in more than 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity. In FY13, our investments climbed to an all-time high of nearly $25 billion, leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs and tackle the world’s most pressing development challenges. For more information, visit
www.ifc.org.

About Credo
Credo is a leading microfinance organization in Georgia, with the mission of providing sustainable financial services to the entrepreneurial poor and Georgian micro- and small businesses, with preferences for rural activities and those businesses that create income and employment opportunities for the poor. Credo operates 40 branch offices, serving over 140,000 clients. Since its founding in 1997, Credo’s primary objective has been to enable poor families in Georgia to increase household incomes, reduce vulnerability, and create sustainable livelihoods. It offers innovative, socially-oriented, and adjusted financial products and services that lead to better solutions for alleviating poverty. For more information about Credo, please, visit: www.credo.ge.