Global Communities, Calvert Impact Capital Sign $5 Million Loan Agreement to Expand Lending in the Middle East
This article was originally written and published by VEGA Member Global Communities here.
Global Communities recently closed a new loan agreement for $5 million with Calvert Impact Capital. The funds will be used for on-lending to Vitas Palestine to support housing lending in both Gaza and the West Bank over three years.
Global Communities and Calvert Impact Capital have collaborated since 2007, when they signed a $1 million loan agreement that helped Global Communities grow its lending portfolio from $120 million to $260 million.
Commenting on the transaction, Richard Shumann, Director of Development Finance Operations at Global Communities, said: “Global Communities is excited to expand our 11-year relationship with Calvert Impact Capital. The new loan allows us to continue our commitment to lending in the Middle East, especially for housing improvements and construction for low-income families.”
“We are pleased to renew and increase our investment in Global Communities and explore new impact areas,” said Calvert Impact Capital Investments Director Songbae Lee. “This investment is interesting to us because it expands our traditional microfinance investing with a focus on international housing, and we’re doing it with an established partner.”
Through Vitas Palestine (still operating as Ryada, in Gaza) Global Communities has provided loans to Palestinians left out of the formal financial sector since 1994. Considered one of the first credit programs in the Palestinian territories, Ryada started providing home improvement loans to families in Gaza in 1994. Based on the strong success of the program and the positive impact it had on clients’ lives, Ryada expanded to the West Bank in 2001, where the company now operates its seven branches as Vitas Palestine. Today, Vitas Palestine provides micro and small loans for home improvement, business development, and residential land and apartment purchases. Currently, Vitas Palestine serves more than 9,500 clients and has an outstanding portfolio of $47 million. Vitas Palestine performs extensive due diligence on all its clients, including checking them against OFAC and other government lists, to ensure all loans go to vulnerable families to improve their lives and not promote further conflict.
About Global Communities and Vitas Group:
Global Communities is an international non-profit organization that works closely with communities worldwide to bring about sustainable changes that improve the lives and livelihoods of the vulnerable. Founded by Global Communities, Vitas Group is a US-based for-profit holding company that operates a network of microfinance companies, predominantly in the Middle East, aimed at improving long-term development impact on families, businesses and communities through the provision of financial services. Over the last 10 years, Vitas companies have disbursed more than $2.2 billion to over 600,000 customers with an annual default rate below two percent.
About Calvert Impact Capital
Calvert Impact Capital invests to create a more equitable and sustainable world. Through our products and services, we raise capital from individual and institutional investors to finance intermediaries and funds that are investing in communities left out of traditional capital markets. During our 22-year history, we have mobilized nearly $2 billion of investor capital.