Social impact investor Oikocredit located in Amersfoort, the Netherlands, invested USD 500,000 in Victory Empowerment Centre, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) focused on improving the living conditions of disadvantaged women through innovative and flexible microfinance services.
Victory Empowerment Centre (VEC) is a microfinance non-governmental organisation (NGO) founded in June 2013 in Lagos, Nigeria. VEC provides microloans to low-income micro-entrepreneurs through group lending. They focus more on the economically active low-income women who have a running business that can pay the money lent to them. As at August 2021, VEC operates in four states (Lagos, Ogun, Abia and Akwa Ibom) through a network of 36 branches.
Victory is a strong member of Association of Non-Bank Microfinance institution of Nigeria (ANMFIN). VEC has strong social orientation and objectives and has obtained international institutional and social rating from Microrate. The loan will go towards supporting small businesses, especially those owned by women.
The loan will support micro entrepreneurs in improving their businesses and livelihoods and will serve as a conduit to economic empowerment. This is Victory Empowerment Centre’s first international investment.
Victory Empowerment Centre Chief Executive, Mr Uzoma Emmanuel Nwazuoke, said:
“Oikocredit’s loan will help reach more of our deserving clients at the bottom of the pyramid. With this loan we will help our existing and new clients to scale up their businesses and improve their socio-economic condition.’’
Ufuoma Eghwerehe, Oikocredit’s Country Manager for Nigeria, stated: ‘’We are delighted to support a small microfinance institution like Victory Empowerment Centre and are proud to be their first international lender. Our partnership will help provide the much needed micro loans to micro, small and medium enterprises in Nigeria to increase their access to finance in these challenging Covid-19 times. It will also help Oikocredit’s strategic focus on promoting financial inclusion and economic development in Africa, while achieving a higher social impact in the communities we serve.
Oikocredit, A social impact investor and worldwide cooperative Oikocredit has 45 years of experience funding organisations active in financial inclusion, agriculture and renewable energy.
Oikocredit’s loans, equity investments and capacity building aim to enable people on low incomes in Africa, Asia and Latin America to improve their living standards sustainably.
Oikocredit finances close to 550 partners, with total outstanding capital of €856 million (as at 31 March 2021).
For more information see: www.oikocredit.coop