IFC supports Nigeria’s FCMB to finance SMEs facing COVID-19 related challenges

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today announced a $50 million loan to Nigeria’s First City Monument Bank (FCMB) Limited to help it expand lending to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) so they can sustain business activities disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The loan, made through IFC’s COVID-19 fast-track financing support package, reflects IFC’s commitment to Nigeria’s private sector following the severe challenges brought by the health and economic crisis. The funds will allow FCMB to support hundreds of businesses with trade financing and working capital loans.

FCMB’s Chief Executive, Adam Nuru, said, “IFC’s loan facility will allow us to keep credit flowing to SMEs as well as corporate companies across all sectors of Nigeria’s economy, including in the health, pharmaceutical, food and trading industries.” IFC’s Country Manager for Nigeria, Eme Essien Lore, said, “Supporting financial institutions like FCMB is vital to keeping smaller businesses solvent, saving jobs, and limiting economic damage in the face of a challenge as formidable as COVID-19. Although Nigeria has a strong and dynamic private sector, it needs liquidity now to ensure it remains viable during and after COVID-19.”

IFC’s $8 billion global COVID-19 fast track facility was launched in March 2020 to support existing clients through direct lending to affected companies and to financial institutions so they can continue lending to their clients and help to preserve and create jobs. With a network of 205 branches, FCMB serves more than 4.5 million customers in Nigeria. IFC’s portfolio in the country stands at $1.3 billion in sectors including manufacturing, financial services, infrastructure and technology.

IFC—a sister organisation of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work in more than 100 countries, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries. In fiscal year 2019, we invested more than US$19 billion in private companies and financial institutions in developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. FCMB on the other hand is the retail and commercial banking arm of FCMB Group Plc, a financial services Group with operations in Nigeria and the United Kingdom. From its early origins as an investment bank, FCMB transitioned into a full-fledged commercial bank in 2012 and has since grown to become one of the top 10 banks in Nigeria by total assets. Through its network of 205 branches, FCMB serves more than 4.5 million customers across Nigeria.

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