Banking on Women

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Madelein Kulab, Fisherwoman and Tour Boat Operator, Graduate of the Bank of Palestine Mini-MBA Program

What’s New? IFC analyzed its client data over the past four years and found that loans to women-owned SMEs have lower NPLs across countries and over time. Also, watch the discussion about Unleashing the Potential of Women Entrepreneurs through Finance and Markets at the 2019 WBG-IMF Annual Meetings. Last, read the WEOF 5-year progress report for exciting results and impact.

Banking on Women: Women customers present a substantial growth opportunity for pioneering financial institutions. Women own and lead roughly 6.6 million formal SMEs and 39 million micro-businesses in emerging markets, with a total estimated unmet credit demand of $1.7 trillion. IFC’s Banking on Women program provides financing and expertise to an extensive network of financial institutions to help them acquire women-owned SME and retail customers—and profitably finance them.

IFC provides a full range of senior and subordinated debt, Gender Bonds, equity, credit enhancement, and risk-mitigation products to financial institutions which, in turn, provide a  suite of financial services to women-owned SMEs.

Through Banking on Women, IFC also helps financial institutions provide high-quality services to women customers, by providing advisory expertise in areas such as customer segmentation strategies and customer support services. Providing value to women customers generates bottom-line value for financial institutions.

Development Reach

The impact of IFC clients in 2018:

  • 751Thousand WOMEN COLLECTIVELY EMPLOYED
  • 36PercentOF IFC’S NOMINATIONS FOR BOARD POSITIONS WERE WOMEN
  • 386Thousand SME LOANS MADE TO WOMEN-OWNED ENTERPRISES
  • $11.2 BILLIONIN SME LOANS TO WOMEN-OWNED ENTERPRISES

Examples of our work:


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