Mid-tier lender Sidian Bank has signed a Ksh990 million deal with the Netherlands-based social impact investor, Oikocredit.
The funding deal will enable the bank to support onward lending to the SME sector in Kenya. The funding will be utilized to support the bank’s growth plans to further its strategy of providing affordable credit to its SME clients and privately-owned business enterprises as it works towards empowering entrepreneurs to realize their potential through providing tailor-made financial solutions.
“I am delighted with the direction that the bank is taking. This is yet another footprint of the bank’s strategic initiative to be the preferred bank for trade finance solutions and SMEs, especially in view of the impact of the pandemic on SME businesses. We intend that the success of this partnership will impact SMEs ranging from small, medium and large,” said Sidian Bank CEO Chege Thumbi at the signing ceremony.
Oikocredit which is a social impact investor and worldwide cooperative has over four decades of experience in promoting sustainable development through investments and focuses on investments around financial inclusion, agriculture, and renewable energy.
During the signing of the agreement, Oikocredit’s Investments Manager, East and Southern Africa Caroline Mulwa, noted that Oikocredit is excited to be part of Sidian Bank’s growth.
“This investment will enable the bank to lend more and thus contribute to the creation of sustainable jobs, which is in line with the mission of Oikocredit to create lasting social impact on the low-income sections of the society. During the investment period, Oikocredit will work with the bank to mainstream social impact and its measurement into its lending activities,” said Ms Mulwa.
According to expert estimates, 600 million jobs will be needed by 2030 to absorb the growing global workforce, which makes SME development a high priority for many governments around the world.
In emerging markets, most formal jobs are generated by SMEs, which create 7 out of 10 jobs. However, access to finance is a key constraint to SME growth, it is the second most cited obstacle facing SMEs to grow their businesses in emerging markets and developing countries.