Abidjan, March 29, 2018 – Compagnie Financiere Africaine Group (COFINA), Africa’s leading institution for mesofinance, is announcing a strategic partnership with Mediterrania Capital Partners, a private equity fund dedicated to business growth in Africa. This minority stake’s agreement, signed together with technical assistance, will enable COFINA to raise up to 50 million euros in equity and debt over the next three years.
Thanks to this new deal COFINA will strengthen its ability to finance its customers and accelerate its regional development, with four new subsidiaries to open in West and Central Africa by 2021. The arrival of Mediterrania Capital Partners among COFINA’s stakeholders will allow both for consolidation of the Group’s finances and increase of its available funds to finance entrepreneurs.
COFINA’s financing goes to the "missing link", in particular to micro-businesses and SMEs that have difficulty accessing medium / long-term financing (more than 70% of companies in Africa according to the African Development Bank). Many existing financial institutions do not have adequate knowledge or systems to evaluate and monitor SME projects, which they compensate for by demanding very expensive guarantees.
Mesofinance supports SMEs’ entrepreneurs or managers whose financing needs have become too important for microfinance institutions, but whose entrepreneurial structure is still considered insufficiently formal for traditional commercial banks. Only 6.4% of sub-Saharan African SMEs report having access to finance compared to 27% in Southeast Asia.
“After a first expansion phase, the signing of this partnership with Mediterrania Capital marks a new stage in the development of our group in a very promising market. In Africa, credit to the private sector accounts for less than 20 percent of GDP, compared to 30 percent in South Asia and 40 percent in Latin America. Despite their immense potential, the markets in which we operate, while showing no lack of talented entrepreneurs, are very poorly served by traditional banks,” says Jean-Luc Konan, founder of COFINA.
“Mediterrania is proud to contribute to the development of COFINA business model. This African success story has succeeded in establishing itself in a key sector and claiming a leading position in five African countries. We hope that the new phase of expansion in which we will engage will increase COFINA’s profitability and make it a model for all other players in the sector,” said Albert Alsina, CEO of Mediterrania Capital Partners.
About COFINA Group
Founded in 2013, the COFINA Group is the first African financial institution dedicated to mesofinance, the "missing link" between microfinance and traditional banking, which offers the opportunity for African SMEs (90% of private companies on the continent) to access more easily to credit. Present in six French-speaking African countries (Congo-Brazzaville, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Guinea Conakry, Mali, Senegal), COFINA has already financed more than 40,000 projects, of which 52% are run by women entrepreneurs. In recent years, COFINA has established itself as the benchmark for financing small and medium-sized businesses in French-speaking Africa. COFINA has set itself the challenge of reducing the financial divide suffered by a large part of the new African middle class.
With more than 1,000 employees, COFINA manages a portfolio of more than 108,000 clients spread over its six subsidiaries. The institution has a balance sheet total of 96 billion CFA francs.
For more information: www.groupecofina.com
About Mediterrania Capital Partners
Led by Albert Alsina, CEO and Founder, Mediterrania Capital Partners is a private equity fund dedicated to the growth of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.
With offices in Barcelona, Abidjan, Algiers, Cairo, Casablanca and Malta, Mediterrania Capital Partners takes a proactive approach to implement its growth strategy by strengthening governance and driving the value creation process of companies.
Mediterrania Capital Partners is a regulated management company approved by the Financial Services Authority of Malta (MFSA) and the Financial Services Commission (FSC) of Mauritius.
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