To boost access to financing for Ecuador’s microentrepreneurs, MicroVest announced an investment in Banco Solidario, one of the leading microfinance institutions in the country. MicroVest’s $4 million investment aims to support the expansion of the company’s lending portfolio and boost the liquidity needs of micro- and small businesses seeking working capital in the post-pandemic environment.
MSMEs account for more than 90% of companies and jobs in Ecuador, yet receive limited access to credit and financial services (IADB). The country’s microfinance gap is estimated at $2.2 billion (SME Finance Forum) and despite Ecuador’s economic challenges brought on by COVID-19, Banco Solidario continued to offer assistance to its clients in the form of payment deferrals, adjusted schedules, and extended grace periods to accommodate clients facing financial constraints. MicroVest’s investment seeks to catalyze the flow of capital to promote liquidity and productivity among microenterprises, which has a direct impact on hyper-local job creation and economic growth.
Founded in 1996, Banco Solidario was one of the first banks in Latin America to specialize in microfinance. The institution offers productive financing, consumer loans, and savings products for lower-income, underserved segments of the Ecuadorian population and currently reaches more than 255k active borrowers, more than half of whom are women (55%).
Banco Solidario is one of MicroVest’s longest standing portfolio companies. MicroVest made its first loan to the company in 2004.