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SANAD and Vitas boost microfinance in Palestinian Territories

2019-01-16

SANAD and Vitas boost microfinance in Palestinian Territories

Investment of USD 4 million to support local businesses and housing

The SANAD Fund for MSME (SANAD) has invested USD 4 million in Vitas Palestine Microfinance Company (Vitas) to advance microfinance in the Palestinian Territories. This funding will be on-lent to micro and small enterprises (MSEs) as well as to low-income households in order to support economic growth and home improvement in the region.

The second largest institution in the Palestinian microfinance sector, Vitas has a solid presence not only in the West Bank, but also in Gaza, a particularly underserved area. With its strong governance and staff expertise, Vitas has proven well able to operate in the challenging economic environment. The loan will support Vitas’s growth plans in 2019, allowing the institution to expand outreach to SANAD’s target group.

SANAD Board Chairperson Dr. Daniela Beckmann said: “We are proud to be continuing our cooperation with Vitas to provide needed financing to underserved clients in the Palestinian Territories. Vitas’s wide-reaching experience in serving MSEs and housing clients makes it an optimal partner for SANAD’s mission to support economic development and stability in the Middle East through sustainable finance.”

Mr. Alaa Sisalem, General Manager of Vitas Palestine, expressed his satisfaction: “I am proud of our continuous cooperation and partnership with SANAD, which will positively affect the quality of life for Vitas Palestine clients. This is especially the case for this agreement, where, for the first time, SANAD has approved loans for home improvement in addition to the small business loans that will empower the Palestinian economy and open new job opportunities.

General Information

About Vitas Palestine Microfinance Company

Vitas Palestine (formerly called Ryada) started as a project in the Gaza Strip in 1994 under a cooperative agreement between USAID and Global Communities (formerly CHF International). The original design of the program was based on a housing finance downscaling model for banks, whereby Global Communities’ role was to originate loans and provide technical assistance on the construction process, while its partner banks provided the lending capital and were responsible for all loan processing, monitoring and collection. Global Communities and the banks shared the capital, risk and income, and it was anticipated that banks would eventually take over the portfolio. Since then, Vitas Palestine has evolved into a program with its own portfolio serving low to moderate-income individual business and home owners who cannot access mainstream credit sources. It has expanded its branches, number of clients, product offering and gross loan portfolio significantly and is now one of the three largest microfinance institutions in Palestine.

Vitas Palestine has its Head office in Ramallah Albireh and ten branches throughout Palestine located in Gaza, Khanyounes, Beitlahya, Hebron, Dura, Nablus, Jenin, Tulkarem, Qalqilya  and Ramallah.

Vitas Palestine’s vision states: “All people with a desire and capacity to improve their lives should have access to the financial services they need to help them realize their potential and become full social and economic participants in their communities.”

In light of recently adopted banking laws and microfinance regulations that require any institution practicing lending to be registered as a non-for-profit or for-profit company and to be licensed by the Palestinian Monetary Authority (PMA), Global Communities decided to register a for-profit company called Vitas Palestine. In early 2015 all of Ryada’s assets were moved to the new company, which is 97% owned by Global Communities and 3% owned by Vitas Group, and Vitas Palestine was officially launched on January 1st, 2015, officially complying with all PMA requirements. For more information, please visit: www.vitas.ps

About SANAD

The SANAD Fund for MSME (SANAD) was established in 2011 to foster economic development and create jobs, particularly for youth in the Middle East and North Africa. SANAD strives to meet these goals by providing debt and equity financing to local partner institutions, such as commercial banks, microfinancers, and other financial institutions, who on-lend money to support micro, small and medium enterprises and to finance housing. The SANAD Technical Assistance Facility multiplies the fund’s development impact and outreach through capacity-building at partner institutions, developing financial infrastructures according to the principles of responsible finance and conducting much required R&D. SANAD’s investors include the KfW Development Bank, which initiated the fund, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the European Union, Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), and OeEB, the Development Bank of Austria. A public-private partnership, the fund is advised by Finance in Motion GmbH, Frankfurt am Main, Germany. For more information, please visit: www.sanad.lu.

Media Contacts

Media contact - Vitas

Lina Naser
PR and General Manager Office Manager
Phone: +970 2 2410510
Email: Lnaser@vitas.ps​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Media contact - SANAD

Nikki Eggers
Senior Officer, Marketing & Communications
Phone: +49 (0)69 271 035-470
Email: press@sanad.lu