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BPR welcomes the partnership of Norfund, FMO and Rabobank as a new shareholder
Published on 5-08-2016 - at 01:59' by IGIHE

BPR’s shareholder, Rabobank, has joined forces with FMO and Norfund . reaffirm their long-term committment to Africa’s future development, growth potential and the local financial sector. As a pro-active shareholder, they will engage in a hands-on manner with BPR to help it grow and realize its ambitions.The partnership is committed to strengthen and develop effective, inclusive financial systems in Africa with a long-term perspective.

Norfund, FMO and Rabobank currently hold stakes in several financial service providers (FSPs) in Sub-Saharan Africa which they have agreed to pool together. The ambition of the partnership is to build strong, locally owned FSPs that serve small and medium enterprises (SMEs), the rural sector, and clients who have not previously had access to financial services.

The partnership, which will be firmly rooted in Africa, will result in consolidation of their respective portfolios, by the creation of an investment and development vehicle under joint-ownership.The new company, to be named Arise, will start with a presence in over 20 countries, a USD 660 million in assets and is anticipated to grow to USD 1 billion. Capital will be allocated to support current investee companies as well as new minority investments in the market. Arise will be operational from 1 January 2017.

Sanjeev Anand, MD at BPR: “BPR welcomes this partnership as an important shareholder for our company and as an important contributor to building a stronger financial sector in Sub Saharan Africa.”

For BPR, this change will offer several opportunities. Similar to Rabobank, the partnership will be a proactive shareholder, providing knowledgeable board members and dedicated experts to support BPR’s growth strategies. Current technical and management services programs run by Rabobank will continue, while new programs will leverage the added expertise of the new partners”.

Berry Marttin, Executive Board Member of Rabobank: “Rabobank’s activities in investing and building strong financial service providers in emerging economies, especially Sub-Saharan Africa, truly fit our Banking for Food strategy; focused on creating solutions with our clients to feed the world in 2050. It is therefore very important to us to take this approach to a higher level. By joining forces and pooling assets, networks and expertise with Norfund and FMO, two highly experienced development institutions of excellent reputation, we are taking a major step forward.”

Kjell Roland, CEO at Norfund: “Norfund invests in financial institutions to strengthen their ability to supply capital and financial services to SMEs and unbanked people in Sub-Saharan Africa and thereby contribute to economic growth and poverty reduction. The establishment of Arise will contribute to the development of the financial sector in Africa on a scale which is far beyond what Norfund can achieve by itself. By partnering with experienced, like-minded investors such as FMO and Rabobank, will ensure that Arise benefits from excellent banking, technical and managerial expertise.”

NannoKleiterp, CEO at FMO: “FMO is proud to co-create a unique platform for investing in African banks with Norfund and Rabobank. Arise can leverage the extensive banking knowledge and valuable agri-banking expertise of its founding partners. This partnership will increase the availability of financial services to small and medium enterprises. Above all it will allow the people in Sub-Saharan Africa to empower themselves by getting bank accounts and taking loans and hence building a better life for their families.”

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals being obtained, both at shareholder level as well as at the various underlying investee levels.



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