news - FMO supports Enda Tamweel with first international syndication for Tunisia’s microfinance sector


FMO supports Enda Tamweel with first international syndication for Tunisia’s microfinance sector

April 9, 2020

FMO and Enda Tamweel, the leading Tunisian micro-finance company, signed an agreement of a syndicated loan of an amount equivalent of EUR 60 million in Tunisian Dinars with the hedging partner of TCX, of which EUR 39 million is syndicated to 5 funds (Blueorchard Microfinance Fund; Regional Education Finance Fund for Africa; Africa Agriculture and Trade Investment Fund; ASN Microkredietpool; and Microbuild I, B.V.) under the FMO’s A/B loan structure. 

The syndicated loan will help Enda Tamweel to finance women, young people from disadvantaged areas, farmers, and people who need to improve their living conditions through education or housing. It will allow the micro-finance company to enhance its capacity of financing vulnerable population and to increase its active customer’s number.

Amost ten years after the start of the Arab Spring, Tunisia is still suffering short-term socioeconomic challenges. These include high unemployment (particularly among youth; around 35%) and economic inequality, which will continue to pose a threat to political and economic stability in the short-to-medium term. Enda Tamweel is one of the few institutions in the country which offers financial and non-financial services for un(der)served Tunisian entrepreneurs and households. 

Given the current context, characterized by an unfavorable economic situation, added to the Coronavirus breakdown repercussions, FMO’s syndicated loan will allow Enda Tamweel to better support its impacted customers in these circumstances. In addition to the syndicated facility, FMO will support Enda’s digitalization journey via a CD project to implement its digital payment company in Tunisia this year. 

“Enda Tamweel is proud of signing such an agreement, the first of its kind in the microfinance sector in Tunisia. This is at the heart of our vision and our development plan to promote financial and social inclusion. In such circumstances, Enda Tamweel will keep its economic role, by preserving jobs, and working on the sustainability of the financed projects” Mohamed Zmander, CEO of Enda Tamweel.

Huib-Jan de Ruijter, Director Financial Institutions at FMO: “Whilst the Covid-19 pandemic is a public health crisis in the first place, the related economic impact is also a grave concern. We strive to help our clients mitigate the impact to their businesses, and to the communities and stakeholders which they serve. We fully support Enda’s deeply rooted social mission, the main driver behind its impact achievements and large outreach to Tunisian microentrepreneurs in rural (44% of total loan portfolio) and urban areas. Through this financing, Enda Tamweel and FMO are emphasizing their commitment towards financial and social inclusion in Tunisia.”

Ruurd Brouwer, CEO of TCX: “Despite turbulent market conditions, TCX is proud to support its partners by hedging the first ever Tunisian Dinar syndication in favor of Enda. The access to local currency remains essential to protect Enda and its clients from exchange risk throughout the entire duration of the syndication. We believe that this is a landmark transaction for the microfinance sector in Tunisia.”   

Normunds Mizis, Chief Credit Officer at BlueOrchard: “We are proud to support and broaden our partnership with Enda Tamweel, both via our flagship BlueOrchard Microfinance Fund and the Regional Education Finance Fund for Africa. At this crucial time, we stand by Enda’s teams, who continue working hard to foster entrepreneurship, employment and more inclusive development for women, young people and the rural communities who require support in responding to the impact of Covid-19. Enda’s social mission and long-term commitment to its clients have and shall continue to have a hugely positive impact for the people of Tunisia.”

Jarri Jung, Head of Financial Institutions at Triple Jump: ‘Triple Jump is very pleased to support Enda Tamweel through investments made with the ASN Microkredietpool fund and the Microbuild fund, demonstrating our commitment to provide impactful investments in emerging markets. As market leader with a strong emphasis on social impact, Enda contributed significantly to the development of the MFI sector in Tunisia, positively impacting the lives of many entrepreneurs in the country. We believe that the financial support provided through this facility comes at a time in which this is much needed, enabling Enda to continue its important social mission on the ground.

In the last 30 years, Enda has proven its expertise that transformed the microfinance sector in Tunisia, thanks to a wide range of services combining financial and non-financial aspects such as coaching and trainings, through its close collaboration with Enda inter-arabe. The microfinance company has financed around 900.000 people with more than 3 million loans since its creation. Its financial products are tailored to women-entrepreneurs (59% of loan portfolio), farmers (27% of loan portfolio) and young entrepreneurs (27% of Enda’s clients). Besides, Enda caters to their clients’ needs by providing them non-financial services that include vocational training, business management and financial education trainings.