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BNP Paribas signs a new investment agreement that will strengthen specialized microfinance institutions in Europe
The Helenos fund was officially launched on European Microfinance Day (26 October 2018) at a ceremony attended by a significant number of representatives from the European Commission, the European Investment Fund and private sector banking establishments, including BNP Paribas, an investor in the fund.
The Helenos fund to fight unemployment and social exclusion
BNP Paribas Principal Investment and the CSR Department signed a one million euro investment in the Helenos Fund, whose mission is to contribute to reducing unemployment and social exclusion through microentrepreneurship across Europe by strengthening microfinance institutions (MFIs).
The fund will leverage two distinct vehicles to achieve this goal, injecting capital and subordinated debt, and at the same time providing technical assistance, building on experience with the non-profit ADIE (Association for the Right to Economic Initiative), an active supporter of the fund.
BNP Paribas is participating in the first closing of the fund, which reached €10 million, alongside the European Investment Fund (EIF) and other institutional investors. The term of the investment is 10 years.
The fund offers a range of complementary instruments and covers targeted geographies, aligning it effectively with BNP Paribas’ existing portfolio while continuing the bank’s longstanding support for the microfinance sector. BNP Paribas will also be a member of the fund’s consultative committee.
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