Yangon social enterprise Proximity Designs in $5.38m funding pact with Yoma Bank

Photo: Supplied.

Proximity Designs, a Yangon based social enterprise which also runs a microfinance unit, has signed a back-to-back funding agreement with Yoma Bank for K7.3 billion ($5.38 million), the company announced on September 5.

The local agreement will allow Proximity Designs to fully hedge U.S. dollar funding attracted from overseas.

Proximity Designs will use the financing to further grow its microfinance business, allowing 28,000 farmers and other rural entrepreneurs to obtain credit.

“Yoma Bank is proud to support the extension of credit to Myanmar’s unbanked population through this innovative partnership with Proximity Designs,” said Hal Bosher, CEO of Yoma Bank.

Proximity Designs delivers smart products and services mainly to boost farm productivity and income of the rural.

“We hope this milestone facility will enable us to increase our reach to 28,000 new farmer households across Myanmar and deliver more affordable products for our clients,” said Savoeung Chann, CEO of Proximity Finance.

Products include foot-powered water pumps with drip irrigation system, salt-water seed selection method to increase yield, solar solutions for alternative energy and financial services like Yetagon Credit for irrigation and energy products and Proximity Finance, for farmers in the dry zone and delta area. As of July 2017, Proximity Finance has about 78,000 clients.

Prior to the latest loan agreement, Proximity Designs also received support from Omidyar Network and IFC.

Yoma bank, founded in 1993, has 72 branches across Myanmar and secured a direct investment from the International Finance Corporation (IFC) in 2014. Yoma also owns Wave Money, a mobile financial service platform with telecom operator Telenor.

Also Read:

Omidyar considers tech and media firms in Myanmar for fresh investments

IFC extends $13.5m financing package to three Myanmar MFIs

Exclusive: IFC to extend $21m debt to half a dozen MFIs in Myanmar

 

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.