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Dutch development bank FMO jointly with RSA Advisory has led a USD 80 million (BDT 650 crores) syndicated five-year loan to ONE Bank, a strongly performing and robustly-growing private commercial bank in Bangladesh, which will be primarily dedicated to finance small and medium-sized businesses (SME) and Green Projects that contribute to inclusive growth and sustainable development of the Bangladesh economy.
Linda Broekhuizen, Chief Investment Officer FMO, said: “ONE Bank is a long-standing partner for FMO. With extensive outreach to SME entrepreneurs, the bank is propelling job creation and driving the economy. ONE Bank at the same time is a committed front-runner in green financing. The alignment of focus between ONE Bank and FMO make us a proud partner to jointly maximize job creation, inclusive growth and positive sustainability effects of our development lending strategies”.
The loan syndication has been jointly arranged by FMO and RSA Advisory from Bangladesh and is the second such facility extended to ONE Bank. Other participants are Proparco (the French private sector development bank), Norfund (Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries), OeEB (the Austrian Development Bank) and ACTIAM-FMO SME Finance Fund (a closed-end fund for institutional investors -mostly Dutch pension funds- of Fund Manager ACTIAM and Investment Manager FMO).
This transaction is FMO’s largest syndicated loan transaction to a bank in Bangladesh to date. And will make a positive contribution to at least four UN Sustainable Development Goals: SDG 1 (no poverty), 8 (decent work and economic growth), 12 (responsible consumption and production) and 13 (climate action).
M. Fakhrul Alam, Managing Director of ONE Bank, thanked FMO and the lenders and said: “This new partnership is yet another achievement not just in ONE Bank’s commitment to grow its balance sheet through value creating, environment-intensive entrepreneurial investments, but also in the country’s overall ambition to achieve various sustainable development goals. Environment conscious entrepreneurial development is a major driver of modern economy and a key value we share with FMO and other development finance institutions and believe in socially and environmentally sustainable and yet commercially viable business growth. This transaction enables ONE Bank to actively pursue these goals.”
The partners of RSA Advisory, K. Mahmood Sattar and Sameer Ahmad, thanked ONE Bank and FMO team as well as the other lenders and said: “This transaction being the second partnership between ONE Bank and FMO & fellow lenders is yet another landmark of joint accomplishment in development-faced investment and global partnership. The FMO-RSA partnership goes back 12 years and has brought many landmark transactions to Bangladesh. RSA is grateful for the support provided by FMO for developing Bangladesh’s financial sector. Investments such as this one that are centered around sustainable development are crucial to economic value creation and serve to see high potential, innovative projects to fruition. This transaction effectively ensures that capital is allocated efficiently with the strategic intent to facilitate businesses that have positive impact on economic and environmental advancement through private sector development.”
The new financing will support ONE Bank’s well-advanced upgrading of its Environmental and Social Management System, in line with FMO and Bangladesh Bank requirements, and provide the funding base stability needed for future expansion and to access other international financiers and investors.