IFC Invests in New Africa-Focused Microfinance Initiative

Saturday, June 25, 2005

More than 300,000 small-scale entrepreneurs in some of the world?s most challenging economies are expected to be financed over the next five years by PlaNet Bank, a new global investment company for microfinance institutions launched this week. It is a joint initiative of the International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, and PlaNet Finance, an international nonprofit organization dedicated to the development of microfinance.
Based in Paris, France, PlaNet Bank will be capitalized at ?31.5 million ($38.2 million), of which IFC will invest ?6 million ($7.3 million). PlaNet Finance and its investment arm PlaNet Investments will provide equity and quasi-equity to PlaNet Bank together with private investors such as AXA and Soci?t? G?n?rale and bilateral and multilateral agencies.

PlaNet Bank will create or invest in 15 microfinance institutions over the next five years. At least 60 percent of these will be in African countries such as Cote d?Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Guinea, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritania, Senegal, and Togo. The rest are expected to be in PlaNet Finance?s network countries such as Argentina, Brazil, China, India, and Mexico.
Press release found here.

Source: IFC