New Financing Tools Empower Turkey’s Women Entrepreneurs
IFC’s 2018 investment of $75 million in Garanti BBVA, one of Turkey’s largest private banks, will help address the working capital needs of women-owned businesses like Atabey’s. This investment was in the form of a gender bond under IFC’s social bonds program. This is the first emerging-market, private-sector bond dedicated to financing enterprises and companies owned or managed by women. The investment was conducted in partnership with the Women Entrepreneurs Opportunity Facility, launched by IFC through its Banking on Women program, and Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Women initiative.
“There is a growing investor appetite for ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) bonds,” says Ebru Dildar Edin, Executive Vice President, Corporate and Investment Banking at Garanti BBVA. “Gender bonds are an attractive and innovative alternative investment instruments for investors who target a niche segment.”
By expanding financial access to Turkey’s women-owned SMEs, the IFC financing is expected to promote greater opportunities for other underserved groups as well, especially in terms of employment. Proceeds of the bond will strengthen the financial sector through diversifying and deepening capital markets and products. Ultimately, it is also expected to increase the presence and participation of women in the Turkish economy.