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CreditAccess Grameen Raises USD 25 Mn Debt From Swedfund

The transaction, the first ESG fundraise by CreditAccess, has an agreed-upon environmental, social, and governance action plan clause which will not only further its ESG commitments but also support Swedfund's sustainable investment vision, the statement said

Leading microfinance lender CreditAccess Grameen on Monday said it has raised USD 25 million (about Rs 187 crore) debt from Swedfund International, the Swedish development finance institution, through the external commercial borrowing route.

CreditAccess, the largest microlender by gross loan portfolio, will use the fund for on-lending to female micro-borrowers. The first tranche of USD 15 million has already been disbursed, it said in a statement, adding Northern Arc Capital acted as the exclusive arranger for the transaction. The transaction, the first ESG fundraise by CreditAccess, has an agreed-upon environmental, social, and governance action plan clause which will not only further its ESG commitments but also support Swedfund's sustainable investment vision, the statement said.

The Bengaluru-based firm is the country's largest microfinance institution in terms of a gross loan portfolio of Rs 11,341 crore as of March 2021, servicing 28.71 lakh active rural women as its customers. CreditAccess Managing Director and CEO Udaya Kumar Hebbar said this is the first foreign currency ECB for the company.

Jane Niedra, the head of financial inclusion at Swedfund, said that this investment will promote improved financial inclusion for rural women, and will contribute to its mission to fight poverty by investing in sustainable businesses. Swedund is Sweden's development finance institution for sustainable investments in developing countries with an investment philosophy of helping create a world without poverty by creating jobs. Therefore, its investments are made within the energy, climate, and health segments.

The state-owned company was founded in 1979 and has since made more than 240 investments in over 60 countries. PTI 


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