Opportunity International Sells Share of Rwanda’s Largest Microfinance Bank to HOPE International
Opportunity International and its affiliates in Canada and Germany have completed a share purchase agreement to sell its 50 percent ownership of Urwego Opportunity Bank (“Urwego”) to HOPE International, a network of Christ-centered microenterprise development programs in 16 countries. HOPE International, which has been a partner of Opportunity International in Rwanda for the last 11 years, is now a 99 percent shareholder in the bank with World Relief continuing to own 1 percent. The transaction has been approved by the National Bank of Rwanda.
With 33 credit offices and 130 active agents across the country, Urwego is the largest microfinance institution in Rwanda, serving more than 300,000 clients or nearly 5 percent of the adult population. Urwego offers agricultural loans, education financing, foreign exchange products, asset financing, home improvement loans, and microinsurance.
As part of the agreement, Opportunity International and HOPE International have executed a Program Services Agreement to enable Opportunity to continue to provide high-impact education and agriculture programs to Rwandans living in poverty through Urwego Bank. Opportunity’s Agriculture Finance program will provide farmers with access to distribution networks and consultants to improve their productivity, boost local food supplies, and increase farmer income.