15 Jul SEAF Launches Global Facility to Invest in Growing SMEs
Small Enterprise Assistance Funds (SEAF) has established a new global facility to provide working capital for growth-oriented small and medium enterprises (SMEs) around the world. The SEAF SME Debt Facility (SSDF) is a USD 30 million facility financed by the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) to provide growth capital to promising businesses in OPIC-eligible countries. The facility will mobilize debt investments to SMEs throughout the emerging markets. SSDF will work with SEAF’s active funds to invest in current SEAF portfolio companies, as well as promising new investment opportunities. The facility will extend long-term loans to businesses at affordable rates, underwritten and administered by SEAF.
“It is important for SEAF to be able to provide additional financing to our portfolio SMEs as they continue to grow, despite the conclusion of an investment period in a particular SEAF fund,” SEAF co-founder and executive chairman Bert van der Vaart said. “Working with OPIC we are able to provide necessary working capital and expansion finance. This facility enables SEAF to support the growth of our portfolio companies even after our funds have finished their investment period. Given our successful collaboration with OPIC in the past, we are very excited for this opportunity to expand our partnership.”
OPIC is a United States government agency created to help U.S. businesses invest overseas, foster economic development in new and emerging markets, and support U.S. foreign policy. A self-sustaining corporation, OPIC has invested in more than 150 emerging markets in its 39-year history and supported USD 194 billion worth of investments. These investments have created more than 842,000 host-country jobs in developing nations and have also generated USD 74 billion in U.S. exports and supported over 274,000 American jobs.
SEAF is a not-for-profit emerging market fund management group specializing in providing growth capital and business support to SMEs in developing countries that are underserved by traditional sources of capital. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., SEAF manages investment funds in emerging markets through a network of offices around the world. SEAF supports the sustainable growth of SMEs through structured debt and equity growth capital and extensive post-investment business development assistance.
SEAF’s two decades of experience investing in more than 330 small businesses has allowed it to identify and invest in promising companies that deliver both positive financial results as well as significant economic and social benefits to their employees and their communities. SEAF’s analysis of its investments has shown that every $1 invested in SMEs generates on average an additional $12 in the local economy.