Bell Finance Limited Liability Company was incorporated in Delaware in July 2019 to establish the Iraqi Middle Market Development Foundation’s lending and educational activities in Iraq since 2005 (www.immdf.org).
U.S.-funded International Development Finance Corporation (www.dfc.org), formerly OPIC, provided 3- to 5-year loans to 53 private sector agricultural, manufacturing, and industrial companies totaling nearly $80 million, with an average total of $150 A $1.5 million loan to finance jobs and economic growth projects in Iraq.
IMMDF also offers a 3- to 5-month internship program that provides credit review and credit monitoring work experience for business students at Iraqi, European and American universities. Participating students were drawn from the American University of Sulimania in Iraq (AUIS), the London School of Economics (UK), the University of Navarra (Spain) and King’s College (Canada).
Bell plans to continue IMMDF’s lending activities by co-financing jobs and economic growth projects in Iraq with eligible Iraqi banks. In addition, Bells plans to continue and expand IMMDF’s educational activities in Iraq.
Bell is governed by a board of directors whose members have extensive commercial lending experience from diverse and complementary backgrounds. It is managed by a team of members with extensive private sector finance experience who have worked at the IMMDF for over 10 years. These include Jorge R. Vila (General Manager), Mazen Abou-Shaban (Finance Manager) and Michael Telford (Senior Financial Advisor).
Currently, Global Communities (www.globalcommunities.org) owns 100% of Bell, although Bell’s business plan envisions other private sector equity investors joining the global community as Bell owners.
Bell is named after Gertrude Bell (CBE, al-Khatun, 14 July 1886 – 12 July 1926), an English writer, traveler, political official, administrator of personnel and archaeologist, named for his background, political career, and extensive travels in and around Iraq, who contributed significantly to the establishment and management of the modern Iraqi state.
Mr Vila said : ” Having worked with the IBBC in Iraq for over 10 years, we are delighted to be their full member. We look forward to learning from the experience of other members in Iraq, discussing opportunities for collaboration and, when the time comes, co-funded with Bell. Eligible projects for UK companies are discussed.”
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