The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the IFC Financial Institutions Growth Fund has acquired a 6.71% stake in Equity Group, becoming the second-largest shareholder after Arise BV of Norway and Netherlands.
The acquisition was revealed during a partnership agreement which will see IFC inject KSh19 billion ($165 million) towards Equity’s program that seeks to finance at least 5 million MSMEs and 25 million households, thereby creating 50 million direct and indirect jobs.
Through this equity investment, Equity Group commits to zero lending for coal-related projects such as the development or expansion of coal-fired power plants, coal mines, transportation assets used exclusively for coal, infrastructure assets exclusively dedicated to support coal mines and coal transportation, or any utility company that generates more than 20% of energy or revenues from coal, or have an annual coal production of 10 million tons or more; or have an installed coal-fired capacity of 5,000MW or more.
Further, Equity Group has agreed to allocate $80 million equity towards climate-related interventions covering all subsidiaries over the next 5 years.
The credit facility of $165 million includes $50 million from IFC, $50 million from British International Investment (BII), $65 million from Symbiotic, Responsibility and FMO, the Dutch entrepreneurial development bank, and a long-time shareholder in Equity through Arise Investments.
The investment is IFC’s first in Africa that aligns with the corporation’s approach to increasing green equity investments in financial institutions.