Press Release: The ABC Fund Supports Bolivian Microfinance Institution CIDRE IFD With Multi-Million-Dollar Investment
The Agri-Business Capital Fund (‘ABC Fund’) is announcing today that it is investing USD 4.7 million in Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo Regional (‘CIDRE IFD’), a microfinance institution providing financial support to smallholder farmers in Bolivia.
CIDRE IFD is a microfinance institution which provides financial solutions helping to improve the lives of thousands of farmers and their families in rural Bolivia. It has more than 40 years’ experience with microcredit and commercial loans, reaching more than 20,000 clients across Bolivia through 30 branches. This distribution enables CIDRE IFD to serve almost 80% of municipalities in Bolivia.
The organization is the fourth financial institution in terms of loan portfolio in Bolivia and is the second largest lender for the agricultural sector. Its typical clients are small producers and farmers, with nearly one in five (18%) below the national poverty line and almost 40% of clients being women.
CIDRE IFD has developed tailored solutions such as allowing farmers to present “non-conventional collateral” such as cattle, final products and machinery. This collateral has ensured financial access to those who are not in a position to secure a mortgage against their assets, or to those who are neglected by traditional banks in Bolivia. An average loan size is around USD 5,200 with average duration of 76 months.
With the financing from the ABC Fund, CIDRE IFD is expecting to grow its loan portfolio in rural areas by around 800 loan operations. It also provides a solid capital base to catalyze up to USD 35 million of additional loan portfolio growth, which could mean up to 8.000 additional loans in the coming 5 years.
The ABC Fund has already provided a total of USD 14.8 million in funding to three farmers co-operatives in Côte d’Ivoire, six small-and medium agri-businesses in Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mali and Côte d’Ivoire, and four financial institutions operating in Ecuador, Benin, Kenya and Uganda which on-lend to smallholder farmers and agri SMEs.
Jean-Philippe de Schrevel, Founder and Managing Partner of Bamboo Capital Partners commented: “This investment in CIDRE IFD is another example of the catalytic role the ABC Fund is playing in rural communities in different parts of the world. The pandemic, which has affected Bolivia as it has the rest of the world, means the role of the Fund and our ability to invest is more important than ever. We believe this investment will have a positive impact and improve the lives of many smallholder farmers and their families in Bolivia and will play a role in both reducing poverty as well as building resilience in agricultural communities.”
Carlos Martin Rodriguez Oliviery, CEO at CIDRE IFD, commented: “We are grateful for the support and trust that the ABC Fund gives to CIDRE IFD through this investment, which in terms of capital will allow us to expand our capacity to facilitate access to financing to a greater number of Bolivian households that are mainly engaged in agricultural and productive activities in rural areas of the country
Photo courtesy of Jutta Benzenberg.