In the wake of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, Early Dawn Microfinance Company Ltd. (DAWN) received the equivalent of a US $7.5m loan and an agreement for advisory services from FMO, the Dutch Entrepreneurial Development Bank and a DAWN shareholder.
The loan from FMO comes to DAWN at a critical time, as microfinance institutions in general continue to contend with liquidity concerns arising from the pandemic, and in Myanmar, MFIs begin to resume activities following a sector-wide suspension of operations in April and imposed restrictions in May. The funds will allow DAWN to continue its mission to serve women microentrepreneurs and small business owners, and help them recover from the impact of Covid-19.
“We are very happy to be able to support our important partner institution and investee DAWN in Myanmar and to contribute to financial inclusion in the country, especially during the current Covid-19 crisis that has brought massive disruptions across the economy, including in the microfinance sector,” said Marnix Monsfort, Head of Financial Institutions, Asia, at FMO.
FMO will also be providing valuable business continuity advisory services that will help strengthen DAWN’s treasury management function.
“We are grateful for FMO’s continued, and in this case, very timely support,” said Ravi Tissera, DAWN’s Chief Executive Officer, “the loan gives us the confidence to navigate this crisis and is helpful for securing additional funding during this period. The technical assistance project is also an important contribution that will improve our institutional capacity over the long-term.”
DAWN is one of the largest and most prominent microfinance institutions in Myanmar, with over 260,000 active borrowers and an outstanding loan portfolio of nearly MMK 83b as of 31st May 2020. DAWN now has 68 branches operating in 8 regions across the country.