Source: Inter-American Development Bank
$1.5 million project to improve SME access to equity financing
The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), in partnership with Banco de Comercio Exterior de Colombia, S.A. (Bancóldex), will help strengthen the venture capital industry in Colombia to pave the way for increased access to finance for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the country.
The $1.5 million project will provide training to local fund managers and institutional investors as well as facilitate interaction and networking between SMEs and venture and private equity funds to improve access to equity financing and create a suitable public policy framework for investment to flourish in Colombia.
“We expect that business initiatives in Colombia will not wither on the vine, but rather blossom into viable companies through the timely influx of funding,’’ said Susana García-Robles, the MIF team leader. “In order to further the industry, the project includes two innovative components: the creation of a Latin American venture capital institute that will operate in Colombia but train fund managers from across the region, and the creation of the Colombian venture capital association.”
By improving the ecosystem for venture capital and private equity financing, this project will help Colombian entrepreneurs overcome the hurdle of insufficient credit to develop and grow their businesses, allowing the country to better take advantage of its thriving environment for entrepreneurship to foster economic growth and reduce poverty.
Colombia is currently the world’s eighth and Latin America’s third most entrepreneurial country, as measured by the number of newly created enterprises, according to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, GEM Colombia 2010, an annual ranking on the level of entrepreneurship in over 59 countries.
The project will be executed by Bancóldex, a state-owned commercial bank with a mission to promote economic development and contribute to the competitiveness of Colombian firms while operating in a financially sustainable way.