Equity Bank, African Guarantee Fund ink deal to boost women businesses
Tuesday, March 16th, 2021
Kenya's Equity Bank and a pan-African financier, African Guarantee Fund (AGF) on Monday signed an 8.2 billion shillings (75 million U.S. dollars) deal to boost post COVID-19 recovery for women businesses in East and Central Africa.
James Mwangi, CEO of Equity Group, said in Nairobi that the facility is earmarked to support his organization to scale up its lending activities to women-owned and managed micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), ensuring women are able to access credit at an affordable interest.
"With this facility from African Guarantee Fund, we will be strongly positioned to continue to offer our customers particularly women in business access to funding at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact negatively on businesses," Mwangi said.
Equity Bank operates in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, South Sudan and the DRC. Mwangi observed that the guarantee will enable the economy to bounce back through increased lending to the private sector amidst the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Jules Ngankam, CEO, AGF Group said that the partnership with the regional bank will also foster sustainable development particularly for women-led and owned businesses that will be supported under the Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa initiative. (Xinhua)