Kyiv, Ukraine, May 15, 2006—The
International Finance Corporation, the private sector financing arm of
the World Bank Group, is providing a $3.5 million loan to Biocon, a leading
pharmaceutical warehousing company in Ukraine.
Established in 1994, Biocon has grown into a premier provider of services
relating to customs clearance, transportation, relabeling, and repackaging
of imported drugs. Biocon will use IFC’s financing to refurbish two recently
acquired warehouses, build a new storage facility, and upgrade its IT systems.
Guy Ellena, IFC’s Director for Health and Education, said,
“As a market leader, Biocon sets the standards for the rest of the industry.
By supporting the company’s expansion, IFC expects to promote a greater
role for the private sector in providing high-quality health care products.”
“This is IFC’s first investment in a third-party logistics service company
in Ukraine,” noted Elena Voloshina, head of IFC’s
operations in Ukraine. “IFC's participation will help this locally owned
and managed pharmaceutical distributor expand and improve the efficiency
of its operations,” she added.
“IFC's investment offers us access to long-term financing that is otherwise
unavailable in Ukraine. Success of the project will demonstrate to other
potential investors in Ukraine that pharmaceutical distribution projects
can be economically viable and have developmental value,” commented Alexander
Yavorsky, President of Biocon. “IFC’s loan will help us improve
the efficiency of the pharmaceutical distribution network and enhance the
quality of services and care provided to patients,” he added.
Founded in 1994 in Kyiv, Biocon is the market leader in the
pharmaceutical customs bonded warehouse business in Ukraine, providing
services in customs clearance, transportation, and storage of pharmaceutical
products. Among Biocon’s key and long-term clients are many of the large
multinational pharmaceutical manufacturers.
The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector
arm of the World Bank Group, promotes sustainable private sector investment
in developing and transition countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve
people’s lives. IFC finances private sector investments, mobilizes capital
in the international financial markets, helps clients improve social and
environmental sustainability, and provides technical assistance and advice
to governments and businesses. Its 178 member countries provide its share
capital and collectively determine its policies.
From its founding in 1956 through FY05, IFC has committed more than $49
billion of its own funds and arranged $24 billion in syndications for 3,319
companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s worldwide committed portfolio
as of FY05 was $19.3 billion for its own account and $5.3 billion held
for participants in loan syndications. For more information, please
Ukraine became a shareholder and a member of IFC in 1993. As of May 1,
2006, IFC has invested around $480 million in 23 projects. IFC expanded
its investment program in Ukraine significantly in 2004-2005, committing
$255 million in the agribusiness, financial, and general manufacturing
sectors. IFC has also been conducting an extensive advisory program since
1992, which initially focused on the privatization of small businesses,
land, and idle construction sites. Current donor-funded programs offer
advice on corporate governance, leasing, and agribusiness. Programs also
seek to improve the business environment and promote the growth of small
and medium enterprises.