Chennai, India, January 5, 2000 - The
International Finance Corporation will become an equity partner in Sundaram
Home Finance Limited (SHF), a new private housing finance institution that
will help address the lack of mortgage financing for India's growing lower-middle
and middle income households.
IFC will make an equity investment of about $2.3 million for 20 percent
of SHF share capital. Sundaram Finance Limited of India, the main promoter,
is also making an equity investment of about $7.5 million. An international
financial institution and another domestic entity are also expected to
join in SHF's shareholding.
There is considerable unmet demand for housing finance in India spurred
by an increasing population as well as rapid urbanization. This investment
will help address the massive needs for housing investments both at the
institutional level and by increasing the supply of long-term financing,
said Mr. Rashad-Rudolf Kaldany, IFC's Director for South and Southeast
Asia who signed for IFC. New housing finance should, in turn, encourage
investment and employment in the construction industry and in other municipal
infrastructure such as roads, water works, and power, generally improving
standards of living, he added.
Mr. S. Viji, Vice Chairman of Sundaram Finance, signed on behalf of Sundaram
Finance a major multi-faceted finance firm in India. The company is a leader
in truck and car financing with a large established distribution network.
Mr. Viji said that Sundaram Finance has grown over the past four decades
on foundations of dedicated customer service, fair business practices and
prudent financial policies and that the same philosophies would guide the
The mission of IFC, part of the World Bank Group, is to promote private
sector investment in developing countries, which will reduce poverty and
improve people's lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the
developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets,
and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.