In a bid to cater to the needs of more poor and enterprising women entrepreneurs across the country, ASA Philippines tapped the capital markets in January 2017 with an inaugural ₱2 billion 5-year corporate notes issue. This is the largest issuance by an individual microfinance institution, indeed by an NGO, in the country to date. Proceeds of the issue will be used to expand the Foundation’s lending activities and supplementary services to a target 2 million poor clients in the next 5 years.
BPI Capital was the lead arranger of the issue which was syndicated to Bank of the Philippine Islands, Land Bank of the Philippines and Philippine National Bank. Credit Guarantee & Investment Facility, which was established by the 10 members of ASEAN along with Japan, China, South Korea and the Asian Development Bank, guaranteed the issuance.
Venturing into microfinance for the poor, where loans are granted on a 100% collateral free basis, is widely perceived to be quite risky. Thus traditional banks have shied away from serving the financial needs of the poor. ASA Philippines’ exemplary performance, however, gave confidence to these financial institutions. Their strong vote of confidence was demonstrated on the day of issuance when the notes were 2 times oversubscribed. I wish to thank everyone involved in this venture, particularly every single poor client of ASA Philippines who gave her full trust and confidence to the Foundation and diligently paid her obligations thus bringing us to this extraordinary milestone. My deepest thanks to the board and benefactors for approving this transaction which will help us achieve our next target. I pray to God to bless us and guide us to utilize every centavo of this transaction for the benefit of our poor clients and towards the progress of ASA Philippines Foundation!
Kamrul Hasan Tarafder
President & CEO