IIC And Visión Banco Sign Agreement To Continue Supporting Micro, Small, And Medium-Size Enterprises In Paraguay


From left to right: Luis Maldonado; Beltrán Macchi; Steven Puig; Carlos Roa

The loan proceeds will benefit up to 500 Paraguayan microenterprises and small and medium-size businesses

Asunción, Paraguay – On October 9, 2008, the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) and Visión Banco S.A.E.C.A. (Visión Banco) signed a loan agreement for up to US$5 million. The funds will be used to offer short- and medium-term loans to micro, small, and medium-size enterprises in Paraguay for productive investments in fixed assets or working capital.

Visión Banco is the first microfinance bank in Paraguay to provide specialized financial services and products for such enterprises in order to promote the socioeconomic development of middle- and low-income individuals nationwide. It has more points of service and employees than any other private bank in Paraguay.

Support for microentrepreneurs is key to economic growth and can, over time, boost business development, productivity, trade, technology, and innovation.

The signing ceremony took place in Asunción, Paraguay, during the XI edition of the Inter-American Forum on Microenterprise (FOROMIC). Signing for Visión Banco were Beltrán Macchi and Luis Maldonado, executive directors.

According to Beltrán Macchi, executive director of Visión Banco, "Access to financing on appropriate terms will help generate direct and indirect employment and improve the financial structure of companies that face problems in obtaining financing with terms of more than one year. Projects that target rural families and the neediest population segments will bring more of them into the formal banking and financial sector and will do so more cost-efficiently."

Steven Puig, Inter-American Development Bank Vice President for Private Sector and Non-Sovereign Guaranteed Operations, signed for the IIC.

Carlos Roa, IIC Financial Institutions and Structured Finance Coordinator, explained, "Visión Banco is an excellent example of upscaling. It is expanding its microenterprise market to encompass small enterprises, too, and is proving how versatile a financial institution that is committed to society and its clients can be. We are proud to be part of this effort. There is no better occasion than FOROMIC to show our support for Visión Banco during this crucial growth stage."

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: Carlos Roa (in Washington D.C.)

Telephone: (202) 623-3955

Email: carlosroa@iadb.org