IFC injects R1.2 billion in finance to FNB to expand SME lending

The International Finance Corporation has announced new financing of R1.2 billion to support First National Bank’s lending to small and medium enterprises, with a particular focus on women-owned businesses.

The investment forms part of the IFC SME Push Program that helps financial institutions reach more clients in the micro and small enterprise space.

Manager at the IFC Sub-Saharan Africa financial institutions group, John Wilson says women constitute a small fraction of those who receive funding from banks.

He says FNB will make the selection.

They will have to be comfortable with the risk decision making.

John Wilson, Manager at the IFC sub-Saharan Africa financial institutions group

The programme we are trying to put together, we are trying to mobilise 2 to 3 billion dollars into the market.

John Wilson, Manager at the IFC sub-Saharan Africa financial institutions group

We have seen roughly 6 million SMEs in the country, only a fraction, 10% are formal. All of those formal companies have bank accounts. But only roughly half of them get income loans from the formal financial institutions. That means everybody else needs to get access to funding from somewhere else.

John Wilson, Manager at the IFC sub-Saharan Africa financial institutions group

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