To Advance Financial Inclusion in Emerging Markets
BETHESDA, Md., March 30, 2021–MicroVest, an emerging markets-focused impact investment manager, today announced that the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) has committed to double the size of its financing to MicroVest’s flagship levered fund, from $48 million to $96 million. This new commitment will help expand financing opportunities for Microfinance and SME finance institutions that support underserved microenterprises and small businesses worldwide. This new commitment also qualifies for DFC’s 2X Women’s Initiative because of MicroVest’s focus on providing financial services that benefit women, as well as the firm’s percentage of women in leadership positions.
With an estimated 1.7 billion adults lacking access to basic financial services and a $4.8 trillion funding gap for micro and small businesses in developing economies, MicroVest seeks to help close the financing gap and promote financial inclusion by providing credit to local financial institutions banking these underserved segments and communities. At present, MicroVest has investments in 66 Microfinance and SME finance institutions which collectively serve 11 million borrowers across 30 frontier and emerging market countries.
Ron Cordes, Chair of MicroVest’s Board of Directors stated “Across the markets where we invest, small businesses and households are counting on inclusive financial services to get back to business following unprecedent challenges in 2020. With the support of DFC, MicroVest is in an even stronger position to play a constructive role for these businesses during their post-COVID-19 recovery and advancing multiple SDGs.”
“DFC’s commitment is a great testament to its power to catalyze private sector solutions to support financial inclusion,” said CEO & CIO Gil Crawford. “This financing also comes at an opportune time given the need to help developing markets restart their economies post-COVID-19; this milestone allows us to continue increasing our lending footprint to meet increased demand from microfinance borrowers and small businesses worldwide.”
“DFC is pleased to support MicroVest’s flagship levered fund, which has a track record of success promoting gender equity through financing around the world,” said Vice President of DFC’s Office of External Affairs and Head of Global Gender Equity Initiatives Algene Sajery. “MicroVest’s focus on women’s empowerment and providing financing to traditionally underserved micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises is key to helping lift up communities and increase economic development in developing countries.” MicroVest’s investments are aligned with six of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals–(1) No Poverty; (5) Gender Equality; (8) Decent Work & Economic Growth; (9) Industry, Innovation & Infrastructure; (10) Reduced Inequalities; and (17) Partnership for the Goals–and are also aligned with the 2X Challenge, an initiative of the G7 Development Finance Institutions to support women’s economic empowerment.
MicroVest Capital Management, LLC (MicroVest) is an asset manager specializing in allocating private debt capital to Responsible Financial Institutions (RFIs) that lend to un- or under-banked borrowers and/or small businesses in emerging and frontier markets. As one of the first U.S.-based microfinance investors, the Firm has built an 18-year track record of investing in microfinance institutions (MFIs) and small and medium enterprise (SME) financial institutions whose interests are aligned with the borrowers and communities they serve. Since its founding in 2003, MicroVest has disbursed more than $1 billion to over 200 RFIs in 60 frontier and countries. MicroVest is a registered investment adviser, Certified B Corporation, and wholly-owned subsidiary of MicroVest General Partner Holding LLC, a Delaware statutory PBLLC whose public benefit purpose is to create scalable investment opportunities that support enterprising ventures and projects in underserved or underfinanced sectors and communities worldwide.