Baku, Azerbaijan, May 19, 2009—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, is helping CredAgro, a leading microfinance
institution in Azerbaijan, improve corporate governance practices and strengthen
its capacity to better serve and promote sustainable development of entrepreneurs
in rural areas.
CredAgro is the first microfinance institution to join IFC’s Azerbaijan
Corporate Governance Project, which works with local companies to help
them become more sustainable. IFC will assess the company’s corporate
governance practices and develop tailored improvement plans to help align
it with international best practices.
“Good corporate governance will increase the efficacy of our mission to
enable access to finance for microentrepreneurs, particularly in underserved
areas,” said Eldar Jafarov, General Director of CredAgro. “Considering
our plans to restructure the company, IFC’s tailored assistance offers
a great opportunity to improve our governance standards.”
IFC will advise and train directors, managers, and key shareholders of
the institution. IFC will also help revise corporate documents, improve
financial reporting and information disclosure, internal control, and internal
“As the microfinance industry is important for private sector development,
we are pleased that CredAgro, one of the leading microfinance institutions,
is committed to improving its corporate governance practices,” noted Tania
Lozansky, Head of Advisory Services for Europe and Central Asia. “We believe
that better corporate governance at microfinance institutions will further
benefit the ultimate customers and small and micro entrepreneurs, in particular,
in the rural areas.”
CredAgro is a nonbank financial institution that serves some 15,000 microenterprises.
It holds 17 percent of Azerbaijan’s total microfinance loan portfolio.
Since 2005 IFC’s Corporate Governance Project has been helping local companies
and banks enhance operations and increase their ability to attract financing
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.