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Coca-Cola, IFC partner to invest $100m for women entrepreneurs in Eurasia, Africa

DBR Staff Writer Published 13 March 2013

Soft drink giant The Coca-Cola Company has entered into a three-year joint initiative with International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, to financially support women entrepreneurs in Eurasia and Africa through an investment of $100m.

This collaboration will help Coca-Cola's 5by20 women's economic empowerment initiative and IFC's Banking on Women program to solve problems faced by women enterpreneurs in poorer countries.

As a part of this agreement, IFC will work with small and medium sized businesses that are owned or operated by women entrepreneurs across the Coca-Cola value chain by offering finance and business skills training through its local and regional banking institutions.

Currently initiated in Nigeria, both organizations have partnered with Access Bank to provide financing to women micro-distributors (MDCs) in the Coca-Cola value chain.

This operation is done in collaboration with Coca-Cola's bottling partner in the country, Nigerian Bottling.

The Coca-Cola Company Eurasia and Africa Group president Nathan Kalumbu said, "By providing greater access to capital, we are investing in our own success and the success of the communities we serve."

IFC financial markets director James Scriven said, "This innovative partnership with Coca-Cola will help expand access to finance for thousands of women who are part of the company's supply and distribution chain."

Coca-Cola's 5by20 is a global initiative to enable the economic empowerment of five million women across the Company's global value chain by 2020.