Singapore: EFA Group’s latest SME trade finance fund deploys $100m since launch

The Marina Bay Sands hotel and casino stands in Singapore, on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016. Photographer: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg

Singapore-based independent asset manager EFA Group’s latest fund EFA SME Trade Finance Fund has deployed over $100 million to its portfolio of over 30 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) within six months of its launch.

The fund provides short-term receivables and supply chain financing to SMEs and aims to deliver an annualized net return of 6-8 per cent to investors, it said in an announcement on Thursday.

It has financed SMEs across the medical products, automotive components and IT hardware/software services sectors.

“Having disbursed over $100 million of cumulative financing in less than six months is just proof of the prevalent demand from SMEs in the region for an alternative source of capital. Booming economies and trade in Asia continue to increase working capital requirements for SMEs,” said Rohit Goyal, Deputy Head of Receivables and Supply Chain Finance at EFA Group.

He further added that in 2018, EFA will develop this platform to service more geographies in Asia.

EFA Group, an independent asset manager specializing in private debt strategies, with a focus on real economy businesses, manages over $1.2 billion of capital.

Established in 2003 in Singapore, the group has over 60 employees between its offices in Singapore, Geneva, Dubai, Istanbul and London.

The SME fund, launched in July last year, marked the group’s diversification from commodity trade finance to non-commodity sectors.

“The next step is to optimise the fund’s lending activities and ensure that we continue to deploy our capital to good quality borrowers in order to bridge the financing gap between companies that need funding and investors who can supply it,” he added.

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