IFC is betting a $25 million investment on Union Bank Plc to support Nigerian SMEs and women-owned businesses - especially those in conflict-affected Northern and Delta region

Union Bank Plc's building stands tall at Marina, Lagos
  • IFC announces $25 million investment to expand Union Bank Plc’s lending to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria. 
  • The facility, which will cover as much as 50% of the risk of the bank’s loans to entrepreneurs, aims to help Nigerian businesses grow and create jobs.
  • Union Bank will offer more lending products and services to women-owned businesses, especially in Nigeria’s conflict-affected Northern and Delta regions.

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has announced a $25 million local-currency investment in a risk-sharing facility to expand Union Bank Plc’s lending to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria.

The facility, which will cover as much as 50% of the risk of the bank’s loans to entrepreneurs, aims to help Nigerian businesses grow and create jobs.

With IFC’s support, Union Bank plans to offer more products and services to women-owned businesses, especially in Nigeria’s conflict-affected Northern and Delta regions, where entrepreneurs face particularly difficult challenges accessing finance, and more than half the population is excluded from the financial system.

Emeka Emuwa, Union Bank CEO said, “Union Bank continues to develop sustainable products and services that promote enterprise and address poverty and financial inclusion. This is in line with our commitment to support the communities within which we operate. The IFC facility is a welcome development which will further deepen our efforts to support Nigerian SMEs and women.”

Also commenting on the initiative, Eme Essien Lore, IFC’s Country Manager for Nigeria said;

“IFC’s risk-sharing facility will help Union Bank increase its focus on Nigeria’s underserved areas, positioning it as one of the leading banks that provides customized services to SMEs that are driving job creation and growth across the country.”

Although small businesses provide over 80 percent of Nigeria’s jobs, a recent World Bank survey found that only 15 percent of SMEs in the country reported having a bank loan or line of credit. It also found that more than half of the women-managed firms surveyed named access to finance as a major obstacle to growth.

The new facility is part of IFC’s Small Loan Guarantee Program (SLGP), which is easing local-currency lending to SMEs in frontier markets. SLGP is backed by the International Development Association’s (IDA) Private Sector Window, which is providing the first-loss guarantee, allowing IFC to scale up its support to underserved and unbanked SMEs.

Our newsletter gives you access to a curated selection of the most important stories daily.

Welcome to the Pulse Community! We will now be sending you a daily newsletter on news, entertainment and more. Also join us across all of our other channels - we love to be connected!

Eyewitness? Submit your stories now via social or:

Email: news@pulselive.co.ke

Recommended articles

Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote poised to overtake another Russian billionaire Vladimir Lisin on Bloomberg billionaires list

Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote poised to overtake another Russian billionaire Vladimir Lisin on Bloomberg billionaires list

Mzee Kibor's will made public, revealing how vast wealth and millions will be distributed

Mzee Kibor's will made public, revealing how vast wealth and millions will be distributed

Ini Edo posts new photos amid reports of welcoming a baby through surrogacy

Ini Edo posts new photos amid reports of welcoming a baby through surrogacy

Mathias Pogba brands Paul Pogba 'a so-called Muslim steeped in witchcraft' amid fetish claims about Kylian Mbappe

Mathias Pogba brands Paul Pogba 'a so-called Muslim steeped in witchcraft' amid fetish claims about Kylian Mbappe

Referee behind chaos at AFCON was rushed to hospital after match

Referee behind chaos at AFCON was rushed to hospital after match

Ne-Yo speaks out after wife Crystal announced end of their 8-year marriage

Ne-Yo speaks out after wife Crystal announced end of their 8-year marriage

Eddie Butita speaks on his fallout with Miss Mandi, offers her a job

Eddie Butita speaks on his fallout with Miss Mandi, offers her a job

Sadio Mane the odd one out as Bayern Munich stars take team photo with glasses of beer

Sadio Mane the odd one out as Bayern Munich stars take team photo with glasses of beer

Africa's richest man, Aliko Dangote, adds extra $915 million to his vast wealth in Q1 2022

Africa's richest man, Aliko Dangote, adds extra $915 million to his vast wealth in Q1 2022