The International Finance Corp (IFC), the private-sector arm of the World Bank, has made a $126 million (INR 916 crore) equity investment in Federal Bank, a private-sector bank in India. The investment will lead to increased financing for climate-friendly projects as well as more financing for small businesses to help accelerate India’s economic recovery from Covid-19.
IFC, and two investment funds managed by IFC Asset Management Company, IFC Financial Institutions Growth Fund and IFC Emerging Asia Fund, raised a 4.99% stake in Federal Bank Limited with the investment.
The investment will support FBL’s commitment to environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards while strengthening its Tier 1 capital adequacy ratio (CAR) and expanding its micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSME) and climate finance portfolios.
Shyam Srinivasan, MD & CEO of Federal Bank said, “After the Bank’s board approved the issuance of shares to the IFC group to an extent of 4.99% of the bank’s paid-up capital, IFC has become a significant shareholder of the bank. The addition of this marquee name to the list of our prominent shareholders reinforces the trust and confidence reposed by the IFC group in the bank and its management. The infusion of quality capital further strengthens Tier 1 and overall CAR of the bank.”
The equity investment is expected to see Federal Bank grow and strengthen its ESG portfolio, with increased green portfolio financing for projects including energy efficiency, renewable energy, climate-smart agriculture, green buildings, and waste management.
India ranks third globally in terms of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, with the country needing substantial investments to meet its goals under the Paris Agreement to reduce GHG emissions by 2030. IFC estimates a total climate-smart investment opportunity of $3 trillion in India to the year 2030.
“This move is in line with IFC’s strategy to support green growth by spurring investments to build back better and greener, seizing the opportunities to help India meet its climate goals and build a greener, resilient future,” said Roshika Singh, Acting Country Manager for IFC in India.
“The investment is also expected to create tens of thousands of jobs, with micro, small and medium-sized enterprises gaining access to much-needed financing, which will also help ensure an inclusive recovery.”
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