IIC approves loan to Banco del Austro S.A. in Ecuador

03/10/2011

Approximately 40 SMEs are expected to benefit from this operation

Washington, D.C. - On March 10, 2011, the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) approved a loan of up to US$2 million to Banco del Austro S.A. (BaAu) to support the bank's lending activities and partially fund the growth of its small and medium-sized enterprise portfolio in Ecuador.

The project seeks to provide BaAu with its first medium-term loan from a multilateral organization, to channel funds to projects that benefit elegible enterprises in Ecuador. The loan is also expected to serve as the first pillar of BaAu’s medium-term financing strategy.

According to Rodrigo Navas, IIC Investment Officer in charge of the operation, "With this loan, the IIC is supporting SMEs and strengthening Ecuador's financial sector. This operation is expected to have a positive impact on the development of the country's private sector, where sources of medium-term funding are limited, especially those targeting SMEs exclusively."

About Banco del Austro S.A.

Banco del Austro is a privately held Ecuadorian bank that opened in 1977 in the city of Cuenca, where it is headquartered. It provides support for commercial, industrial, and agricultural activities in Ecuador, as well as personal loans. The bank offers a full line of financial services to its clients and is part of the financial division of Grupo Eljuri, which is one of the leading business groups in Ecuador. The bank has a presence throughout the country, with more than 70 branches. For more information about BaAu, please visit www.bancodelaustro.com

About the IIC

The IIC is a multilateral financial institution that is a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group. 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. It does so by providing 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 2010, the IIC reached US$1.4 billion in assets and approved forty-nine operations channeling US$374.8 million to SMEs in the region. For more information on the IIC’s activities, please visit www.iic.int

Contact: Rodrigo Navas

Telephone: (202) 623-3926

Email: rodrigon@iadb.org