IDB Invest, a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group, provided a $25 million loan to St. Georges Bank & Company Inc. The funds are directed to the financing of Panamanian small and medium-sized enterprises (SME), including factoring and reverse factoring, a financial instrument that allows SME to meet liquidity demands.
The transaction will improve the capitalization of St. Georges Bank and promote its business model, prioritizing loans to SME. Its strategy to increase the portfolio of this type of client includes encouraging the placement of credit cards for SME clients linked to its point-of-sale business, scaling up the reverse factoring portfolio and increasing the origination of credit in sustainable investments.
Only 15 percent of SME operating in Panama have access to the credit they need, compared to an average of 38 percent in the rest of the region. Factoring and reverse factoring, which provide companies with cash for working capital, consist of the process of purchasing accounts receivables in exchange for immediate payment at a discount. The increase in reverse factoring transactions in Latin America and the Caribbean is due to the increase in the use of electronic billing in the region.
The IDB Invest operation includes technical assistance providing St. Georges Bank with the development of a corporate sustainability policy and procedures to identify and manage green investments in the SME segment. In addition, it incorporates the analysis and improvement of the existing environmental and social risk policy, to support St. Georges Bank in increasing sustainable investments through SME credit.
About IDB Invest
IDB Invest, a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group, is a multilateral development bank committed to promoting the economic development of its member countries in Latin America and the Caribbean through the private sector. IDB Invest finances sustainable enterprises and projects to achieve financial results that maximize economic, social and environmental development for the region. With a portfolio of assets of $12.1 billion under management and 329 clients in 21 countries, IDB Invest works across sectors to provide innovative financial solutions and advisory services that meet the needs of its clients.
About St. Georges Bank & Company Inc.
St. Georges Bank is a banking entity established in the Republic of Panama and part of the Promerica Group, made up of a group of financial institutions linked through the Promerica Financial Corporation (PFC) holding, with presence in Central America, Dominican Republic, Grand Cayman and Ecuador, with a total of consolidated assets that exceed $14 billion and more than 2.2 million customers. Founded in 2001, St. Georges Bank maintains a firm commitment to excellence in customer service, innovation and corporate social responsibility, to generate opportunities for progress and sustainable development for the country. As of March 2019, the Panamanian entity has a total of $1,630 million in assets and close to 68 thousand clients.