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Oikocredit invests USD 2.5 million in Grace and Mercy to expand lending to women in rural communities across Nigeria

Oikocredit invests USD 2.5 million in Grace and Mercy to expand lending to women in rural communities across Nigeria

10 June | 2021

This is Oikocredit’s first loan to Grace and Mercy Households Improvement Initiative.The investment will support low-income communities, especially women entrepreneurs, across Nigeria

10 June 2021, Amersfoort, the Netherlands – Social impact investor Oikocredit has extended a loan of up to USD 2.5 million in Grace and Mercy Households Improvement Initiative (Grace and Mercy), a Nigerian microfinance institution (MFI) supporting marginalised and economically disadvantaged people.

The loan will promote financial inclusion and the growth of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria. Grace and Mercy focuses especially on supporting women entrepreneurs and people in rural and urban areas, which is also why Oikocredit chose to partner with the MFI.  

Dr Omolara Tayo, Chairperson of the Grace and Mercy Governing Board, said: “Grace and Mercy is proud and excited to partner with Oikocredit. The two institutions share a similar background and mission to support and empower economically disadvantaged people through access to inclusive financial services and training. Grace and Mercy will benefit from the wealth of experience of Oikocredit through its technical assistance programme. This has energised us further as we pursue our vision and mission.”

Oikocredit’s Country Manager for Nigeria, Ufuoma Elizabeth Eghwerehe, said: “The Oikocredit loan to Grace and Mercy will empower economically active low-income women in rural and urban areas to improve their businesses and livelihoods during the Covid-19 pandemic. It will also promote financial inclusion, job creation and economic growth in Nigeria, especially to those in remote rural areas. We are happy to continue our mission to support low income families and create higher social impact in Nigeria.’’

About Oikocredit

Social impact investor and worldwide cooperative Oikocredit has 45 years of experience funding organisations active in financial inclusion, agriculture and renewable energy.

Oikocredit’s loans, equity investments and capacity building aim to enable people on low incomes in Africa, Asia and Latin America to improve their living standards sustainably.

Oikocredit finances close to 550 partners, with total outstanding capital of € 856 million (as at 31 March 2021). For more information see: www.oikocredit.coop.

About Grace and Mercy Households Improvement Initiative

Grace and Mercy Households Improvement Initiative (Grace & Mercy) is a Microfinance Institution in Nigeria. It is founded to address the need for financial services by the large population of economically disadvantaged and marginalised low-income people engaged in small trading and micro productive activities in Nigeria. The organisation focuses only on economically active low-income entrepreneurs, especially women, who are deprived, vulnerable and tend to engage in small economic activities which can be supported by small loans. The organisation places a major focus on the rural areas, which houses the majority of their clients.

The institution is one of the widest-reaching MFIs in Nigeria, providing mainly small loans to a group of individuals with the strategy of serving the low niche.

Grace and Mercy operates from 13 States of Nigeria and serves over 180,000 member clients, largely women, with average loan size of NGN 50,000 with a loan portfolio of about NGN 8.7 billion employing about 800 people. It largely has 86% rural and semi-urban spread.

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Note for editors

For more information or to request an interview, please contact Jasmin Panjeta, Communications Business Partner, Oikocredit International, telephone: +31 33 422 4040, email: jpanjeta@oikocredit.org.

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