The FINANCIAL — IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, will provide $50 million to Banco Patagonia to expand the bank’s long-term lending to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Argentina.
Banco Patagonia is one of the leading sources of financing for SMEs in the country and supports more than 42,000 companies, mainly in the agribusiness sector.
IFC’s five-year financing will allow Banco Patagonia to provide long-term funding for SMEs which are an essential engine for growth and job creation in emerging markets. SMEs are estimated to create 4 out of 5 new formal jobs in these markets.
“We are committed to supporting our SME clients’ growth and productivity as well as their important role as community builders,” said Juan Mazzon, Banco Patagonia’s CFO. “This financing shows IFC’s confidence on Banco Patagonia’s ability to promote productive enterprises, which is our main mission.”
IFC’s new financing comes at a time when Argentina is taking sound macroeconomic reforms to resume its path of economic growth. It also aims to support a favorable investment climate by promoting productive investments in the country, according to IFC.
“This new financing for Banco Patagonia is part of IFC’s commitment to support key financial players in Argentina that can contribute to expand funding for productive small and medium enterprises. Access to finance is essential to promote economic and social growth in Argentina.” said Marcelo Castellanos, IFC Regional Industry Manager for Financial Institutions in Latin America and the Caribbean.
In 2006 Banco Patagonia became a member of IFC’s Global Trade Finance Program, which facilitates trade flows through guarantees and includes a network of more than 60 banks in Latin America.
In Argentina, IFC has committed over $1.6 billion in sustainable private sector projects over the past twelve months, becoming the largest international source of financing to the country’s private sector during this period.