IIC and ScotiaBank come together to support small and medium-size businesses in the Caribbean

12/01/2008

Miami, U.S.A.- On December 2, 2008, the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) and Scotiabank signed a partnership agreement to help identify and support high-potential small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) throughout the Caribbean. This partnership will provide solid support for the IIC’s FINPYME program (www.finpyme.org).

"This program provides Caribbean SMEs with a comprehensive understanding of their business strengths and weaknesses, enabling them to identify both the opportunities and the challenges ahead," said Winston A. Cox, IIC Executive Director for the Bahamas, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago.

"For more than 120 years Scotiabank has been a proud supporter of small businesses in the Caribbean," said Pat Minicucci, Caribbean Region head for Scotiabank. "This partnership with the IIC enables us to deepen our relationships with small and medium-size businesses across the Caribbean, working together with the IIC to help them grow and succeed."

According to Jorge Roldán, Chief of the IIC’s Technical Assistance and Strategic Partnerships Division, "The IIC is pleased to work with Scotiabank, a leading bank in the Caribbean, to identify and support high-potential SMEs in the Caribbean through the FINPYME program. We believe in the Caribbean region, in the strength of its small business sector, and in the spirit of its entrepreneurs."

FINPYME, which will be launched in March 2009 in the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, will use the IIC’s proven methodology for identifying and performing diagnostic reviews of participating SMEs in order to improve their competitive position and their access to medium- and long-term sources of funding.

Once participating companies have been evaluated, Scotiabank and the IIC will work together to help them address any weaknesses identified by the diagnostic reviews. This support may include individual training and technical assistance, as well as group-based seminars and workshops designed to train businesspeople in a variety of business and competitive issues.

The Inter-American Investment Corporation is a multilateral financial institution that is a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group. It provides financing (in the form of equity investments, loans, guarantees, and other instruments) and advisory services to private enterprises in Latin America and the Caribbean. In 2007, the IIC reached US$1.2 billion in assets and approved 62 transactions channeling US$470 million to SMEs in the region. The IIC’s mission is to promote the economic development of its regional member countries by encouraging the establishment, expansion, and modernization of private enterprises, particularly those that are small and medium in size. For more information on the IIC’s activities, please visit www.iic.int.



Contact: Jorge Roldán / Michael Apel

Telephone: (202) 746-0608/ (240) 672-4748

Email: jorgero@iadb.org / michaela@iadb.org