In Panama, SMEs are major economic players that create many jobs. 75% of formal employment in the country is created by SMEs.
Supporting a bank that works to promote access to credit for Panama’s SMEs
Capital Bank has developed real expertise in financing and providing non-financial support to SMEs in Panama via its subsidiary Capital Emprendedor. To provide the best possible service to its SME clients, Capital Bank has set up a differentiated follow-up of this segment, which has involved adopting a specific credit risk analysis process and methodology for SMEs.Proparco is supporting Capital Bank – the 5th largest Panama-owned private bank in terms of assets – via a USD 20m credit line to assist the development of its lending activity to local SMEs. Capital Bank is mainly active in the trade and construction sectors. This loan should increase Capital Bank’s SME portfolio by some 25% by 2024.
A loan that promotes women’s entrepreneurship
Gender inequalities remain very marked in Panama and women still participate little in the country’s economy and financial system. The Government of Panama has recently implemented initiatives that aim to reduce gender inequalities. However, despite the Government’s commitment, private sector intervention is crucial for reducing gender inequalities in Panama and Panamanian banks play a major role in this initiative. Capital Bank wishes to take an active part in reducing gender inequalities by developing structured financing for women’s entrepreneurship in order to contribute to the financial inclusion of women who manage or own SMEs.
This operation fits in with the 2X Challenge initiative, as 30% of the credit line will be earmarked to finance SMEs managed or owned by women, in application of 2X Challenge criteria. The bank has pledged to finance transactions that meet one of the four direct criteria concerning entrepreneurship, leadership, employment and consumption.