HDFC Bank, USAID, others launch USD 100 million COVID-19 credit facility for MSMEs

The facility will be available only to new credit customers with a goal of at least 50 per cent of them being woman entrepreneurs.

Published: 21st October 2021 05:40 PM  |   Last Updated: 21st October 2021 05:40 PM   |  A+A-


Image used for representational purposes. (File Photo)


MUMBAI: HDFC Bank in partnership with Mastercard, US International Development Finance Corporation (USIDFC) and US Agency for International Development (USAID) on Thursday launched a USD-100 million credit facility to promote and encourage small businesses in India to digitise while also helping them, particularly women-owned ones, to recover from the pandemic.

The credit facility will extend working capital loans to small businesses that need financing to support their digitisation and recovery from the effects of the pandemic, HDFC Bank said in a joint statement on Tuesday.

The facility will be available only to new credit customers with a goal of at least 50 per cent of them being woman entrepreneurs.

HDFC Bank is proud to join hands with Mastercard, USAID and USIDFC to support small businesses that are the backbone of the economy and the ongoing pandemic has affected their lives and businesses.

This partnership will not only help extend credit but also advise and assist them to modernise and digitise their businesses, HDFC Bank said.

The USAID said women have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, facing economic hardships that directly affect the livelihoods of their families and communities.

"Through this partnership, we will help facilitate access to finance and support the digitisation journey for women-owned small businesses and entrepreneurs to help them recover from the pandemic and reach their full potential," said Veena Reddy, mission director at USAID India.

The USIDFC said this partnership will help small businesses, especially those owned by women, to digitise and modernise, and become more resilient, said Algene Sajery, its head of global gender equity initiatives.

These partnerships that align the strengths of the private sector, government and philanthropy are critical to building back stronger from the pandemic, said Nikhil Sahni, division president at Mastercard South Asia.

To enable small businesses and woman entrepreneurs to connect to the networks that power the digital economy, HDFC Bank will reach beyond its current customer base to make at least 50 per cent of this credit facility available to new small business borrowers, with a goal of at least 50 per cent of the facility being used for lending to women entrepreneurs, said.

Through existing collaborations with the industry CII and the Confederation of All Indian Traders, Mastercard will provide skills training and education to small business owners on their digitisation options.

This initiative is part of Mastercard's USD 33 million (Rs 250 crore) commitment to enable small businesses in the country to recover from the impact of the pandemic.


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