Arise, a new investment firm focused on accelerating the growth of the financial sector in Africa has been launched in Cape Town, South Africa. The firm is partnership between the Norwegian Investment Fund (Norfund), Dutch Development Bank FMO and Dutch Rabobank.
Worth $660 million in assets, Arise's objective is to build a strong and resilient financial sector in Africa. It aims to enhance access to financial services to small and medium-sized enterprise (SMEs), rural sector, retailers and clients who can not access financial services.
In a press statement, CEO of Arise, Deepak Malik said the central focus of Arise is to "build strong and stable institutions that will serve retail, SMEs, the rural sector, and clients who have not previously had access to financial services.
"Arise will increase the availability of financial services to SMEs and will provide a platform for people in Sub-Saharan Africa to empower themselves by opening bank accounts and taking loans - in turn building a better life for their families. We are excited to be spearheading this new venture and sincerely believe that we can make a difference in our own small way," he added.
This investment partnership between the three European lenders was announced in August 2016, with an asset of $600 million, and is expected to grow to $1billion.