MIGA Signs Master Contract with Fons Mediterrània Capital to Insure Productive Enterprises at Critical Moment for North Africa
WASHINGTON, December 20, 2011— The Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), the political risk insurance arm of the World Bank Group, announced today that it is supporting investments in small and medium enterprises in North Africa. The agency has entered into a master contract with Spanish investor Fons Mediterrània Capital, F.C.R. de Régimen Simplificado (FMC) to provide guarantees for up to $48.9 million of the fund’s investments in Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia.
FMC is a private equity fund focusing on investments in small and medium enterprises in a variety of industries. Under the agreement, MIGA has reserved capacity to cover five of FMC’s existing as well as other future investments. MIGA has already signed contracts of guarantee covering two of FMC’s investments in Tunisia—Bitaka S.A. and HHW S.A.
Bitaka provides E-voucher (mobile electronic recharge), scratch cards, and SIM cards for telecom operators in Tunisia. The company has had a high development impact through lowering the cost of mobile connectivity and increasing mobile penetration in the country. As the correlation between mobile penetration and GDP growth is strong in low and middle income countries, the equity investment and shareholder loan provided by FMC is an important step to boosting the Tunisian economy at this critical time.
HHW specializes in the assembly and marketing of Haier brand household appliances in Tunisia. HHW’s main products are refrigerators, freezers, air conditioners, and washing machines. MIGA is insuring both investments against the risks of transfer restriction, expropriation, and war and civil disturbance.
“We are committed to the continued successful operation of the small and medium enterprises we are supporting. MIGA’s coverage is critical to helping us provide assurance to our investors during a time of transition in the region”, says Albert Alsina, FMC’s Managing Partner.
Izumi Kobayashi, MIGA’s Executive Vice President, noted, “MIGA’s mandate is to boost investor confidence, especially in times of change and uncertainty. We’re pleased to underpin FMC’s existing and future investments in North Africa that will contribute to bustling economic activity in several sectors.”
MIGA first introduced the master contract of guarantee for private equity funds in 2009. The agency’s support to these funds offers several benefits, including boosting the funds’ attractiveness to potential limited partners. This is the fifth master contract of guarantee MIGA has signed with a private equity fund.
MIGA’s support to FMC also dovetails with the agency’s initiative to mobilize $1 billion in insurance capacity to support foreign direct investment into the Middle East and North Africa in the wake of the Arab Spring.
MULTILATERAL INVESTMENT GUARANTEE AGENCY
A Member of the World Bank Group
1818 H Street, NW, Washington, DC 20433
Mallory Saleson, MIGA
Tel: +1 202 473-0844
Rebecca Post, MIGA
Tel: +1 202-473-1964
Cara Santos Pianesi