Johannesburg, South Africa, September 4,
2014—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today announced an investment
in Advans Côte d’Ivoire to increase access to financial services for micro-,
small and medium companies.
The $4.3 million loan, equivalent to CFA 2.0 billion, will help finance
the growth and expansion of Advans Côte d’Ivoire, which was established
in 2012, and offers credit and deposit services to the small-scale business
sector. Small companies are critical to job creation and economic growth
in fragile and conflict-affected countries such as Côte d’Ivoire, but
often considered too risky and costly to serve by financial institutions.
Only one in 10 of small firms in Côte d’Ivoire has access to a line of
credit, according to World Bank data.
Grégoire Danel-Fedou, CEO Advans Côte d’Ivoire, said, “Advans Côte d’Ivoire
will increase its contribution to the recovery and development of the Ivorian
economy by broadening access to quality financial services that micro,
small and middle size enterprises need to grow and to create jobs.”
By providing the loan in West African francs, IFC is helping to limit the
foreign currency risk to Advans Côte d’Ivoire. IFC has invested over $10
billion in more than 60 local currencies around the world to help clients
manage risk more effectively and to assist in the development of local
capital markets. IFC is a founding shareholder in Advans Cote d’Ivoire
and holds a 13.3 percent equity stake.
IFC Country Manager for Côte d’Ivoire, Cassandra Colbert, said, “IFC
is eager to extend our partnership with Advans Côte d’Ivoire, and in a
way that will help it avoid foreign exchange risk. As one of few financial
institutions targeting the small-scale business sector in Côte d’Ivoire,
Advans plays an important role in promoting inclusive economic growth.”
Part of the funding is from the Global SME Finance Facility, IFC’s response
to the G-20 call to reduce the $1 trillion financing gap for micro, small
and medium-sized businesses in emerging economies. The facility has the
UK government’s Department for International Development as its anchor
donor and a particular focus on SMEs in fragile and conflict-affected situations
and on women-owned SMEs.
About Advans Côte d’Ivoire
Advans Côte d’Ivoire is the 6th subsidiary of the international
microfinance group Advans S.A. SICAR. It opened its doors in March 2012
and now serves more than 20.000 Micro, Small and medium Enterprises, through
its 5 branches, in Abidjan and Bouaké. To learn more: www.advanscotedivoire.com
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
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