Oman-India fund invests $23mn in microfinance firm

Muscat - 

India-based microfinance firm Annapurna Finance announced that it has received R1.55bn (around US$23mn) as equity investment from Oman-India Joint Investment Fund (OIJIF) in its latest round of funding.

Annapurna Finance said the funding from OIJIF will be used to expand its microfinance portfolio along with other asset classes like SMEs and housing finance.

OIJIF had recently announced the closing of its second fund OIJIF II with commitments of US$230mn.

Annapurna Finance is the second investment from OIJIF II and the first investment in the microfinance space. The investment is a part of OIJIF’s commitment to invest total R2bn in Annapurna Finance over a period of time, the Bhubaneswar-headquartered company said in a press release.

“Over the years, the microfinance industry in India has established itself as an integral part of India’s financial services sector. Annapurna Finance is uniquely positioned given its strong presence in East India and focus on rural customers, both of which have a low penetration of formal banking,” Srinath Srinivasan, CEO of OIJIF said.

Last week OIJIF announced around US$15mn investment in a Pune-based automotive firm that specialises in transmission systems for sports utility vehicles.

Gobinda Chandra Pattanaik, managing director and CEO of Annapurna Finance said, “We welcome our new investor OIJIF. With this new round of equity, we will be one of the best capitalised microfinance institutes in the country. We look forward to leverage the experience of OIJIF along with our existing investors to further strengthen our commitment towards inclusive growth. We are now committed to expand our offerings to our borrowers by venturing in new asset classes like SME and housing finance.”

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