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Multilateral Investment Fund and Scotiabank implement project to boost SME risk management

Feb 1, 2013

Kingston, Jamaica. Initiated by the Multilateral Investment Fund, a member of the Inter-American Development Bank Group, and executed by Scotiabank Jamaica, the pilot Scotiabank Enterprise-Wide Risk Management and Financing (SERMAF) Programme will deploy an upgraded business and risk rating system for SMEs in eight targeted sectors, which include health, education, housing, transport and the visual and creative sectors.

SERMAF will be executed over 24 months at a cost of US$970,000, with US$550,000 funded through the Multilateral Investment Fund and US$420,000 by Scotiabank.  

“Small business financing is one of the single most important elements that drive economic growth. Scotiabank has developed unique insights into the needs of the sector, and we believe that by deepening the understanding of risk management among business owners we will make important gains in helping them access financing to grow their businesses,” said Patsy Latchman Atterbury, Scotiabank’s Vice-President, SMEs.

With a special mandate to reach women-owned businesses, one key project component is risk management awareness and capacity-building for SMEs. By mentoring business operators, Scotiabank will help improve their knowledge of risk management and by extension, improve their capacity to access financing provided by the Bank. This project has been designed within the framework of a joint initiative between the IDB’s Structured and Corporate Finance Department (SCF) and the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), called women entrepreneurshipBanking (weB), which was launched in April 2012 during the Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia.

Three hundred SMEs will be targeted for the programme with a target of 75 receiving financing, 30 percent of which are to be women-owned businesses. Other components of the project include a refinement of Scotiabank’s SME loan appraisal process with enhanced risk management, staff training and the development of the business case for replicating the project in other countries in the English- speaking Caribbean.

About women entrepreneurshipBanking (weB)

Launched in April 2012 during the Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia, weB is a joint effort between the IDB’s Structured and Corporate Finance Department’s (SCF) beyondBanking Program and the Multilateral Investment Fund’s (MIF) Line of Activity for Promoting Small Enterprise Financing. The initiative provides two kinds of incentives: technical assistance grants for training programs and knowledge transfer; and financial products, such as risk-sharing facilities and partial-credit guarantees, to banks and other financial intermediaries to support them in developing and testing innovative, inclusive lending models that target women-owned small and medium enterprises.

About Scotiabank:

Scotiabank has been in Jamaica since 1889 and is the premier financial institution in the country with just over 2,000 employees and 39 Branches Island wide. Scotiabank is a subsidiary of Scotiabank Group, which offers a diverse range of products and services including personal, commercial, and small business banking; wealth management; insurance; and mortgages. The Group is an award winning institution having been named on numerous occasions as the Bank of the Year and Best Bank in Jamaica by international financial publications - the Banker, Latin Finance, Euromoney, and Global Finance magazines. The Scotiabank Group has $332 billion in assets (as at November 31, 2011). For more information please visit

Scotiabank is one of North America's premier financial institutions and Canada's most international bank. With more than 70,000 employees, Scotiabank Group and its affiliates serve some 18.6 million customers in more than 50 countries around the world. Scotiabank offers a broad range of products and services including personal, commercial, corporate and investment banking.

About the MIF

The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), funded by 39 donors, supports private sector-led development benefitting low-income populations and the poor - their businesses, their farms, and their households. The aim is to give them the tools to boost their incomes: access to markets and the skills to compete in those markets, access to finance, and access to basic services, including green technology. A core MIF mission is to act as a development laboratory - experimenting, pioneering, and taking risks in order to build and support successful micro and SME business models. More information at

Left to right: Patsy Latchman-Atterbury; VP SME , Scotiabank Jamaica, Professor the Honourable Errol Morrison, President, University of Technology, Professor Rosalea Hamilton, Scotiabank Chair of Entrepreneurship and VP Community Development, University of Technology, Bruce Bowen, President and CEO of Scotiabank Jamaica and Gerard Johnson, General Manager CCB and Country Rep CJA a.i.,IDB

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