Asian Credit Fund raises new equity to support rural households in Kazakhstan.

Almaty, Kazakhstan – June 11, 2014. Microcredit Organization Asian Credit Fund LLC (ACF) will increase its lending to rural households of Kazakhstan by at least $3 million following an equity investment of $500,000 from BOPA (Base of Pyramid Asia).

ACF’s new equity investor is a holding company based in Singapore, which is focusing on addressing equity needs of smaller and early stage microfinance institutions across Asia. In 2013, BOPA made investments in MFIs in Vietnam, Cambodia and East Timor. Investing in Kazakhstan is the next step of BOPA’s market development goal to reach more than two million micro-entrepreneurs and households with microfinance services through its partner MFIs by 2020.

Mr. Steve Mitchell, ACF’s Mercy Corps representative commented, “Mercy Corps is happy to see ACF well capitalized by an investor who seeks to make social impact with reasonable financial returns. The equity investment was arranged in a way that Mercy Corps will be able to guide ACF’s community development mission for the foreseeable future.”
ACF’s Supervisory Board Chairman, Mr. James Anderson, has big hopes for ACF’s development with the BOPA investment. “Previously, high leverage didn’t leave room for growth at ACF, despite the need for financing among rural households in Kazakhstan,” Anderson commented. ACF, whose average loan size is $680 (Kazakhstan’s GDP per capita is $12,000 ) targets low income households with small loans for business development and energy efficient renovations.
CEO of BOPA, Mr. Christian Andersen, is very excited about BOPA becoming a shareholder of ACF: ”We are very impressed with the work ACF has done for poor households and small entrepreneurs in the rural areas of Kazakhstan. BOPA really looks forward to work closely with ACF and Mercy Corps to support the further growth in scale and impact of ACF in Kazakhstan.”
ACF is a microfinance institution founded by Mercy Corps and serving the underserved rural areas of Kazakhstan with microfinance services. ACF’s mission is to be the leading development organization in Kazakh microfinance sector that provides financial and development products and services to households to improve the quality of their lives.