Bell Finance Limited Liability Company was created in the US State of Delaware in July 2019 to build upon The Iraq Middle Market Development Foundation’s lending and educational activities in Iraq since 2005 (www.immdf.org).

 

Funded by the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (www.dfc.org), formerly OPIC, IMMDF disbursed 3 to 5-year loans to 53 private sector agricultural, manufacturing and industrial companies, in a total amount near US$ 80 million and at an average loan of US$ 1,5 million, to finance projects that generated employment and economic growth in Iraq.

 

IMMDF also offered a 3 to 5-month Internship Program to give Business Management students at Iraqi, European and US universities work experience on credit assessment and loan monitoring. Participating students came from American University of Iraq Sulimaniyah (AUIS), London School of Economics (United Kingdom), Universidad de Navarra (Spain), and King’s College (Canada).

 

In 2017 IMMDF offered a 5-week Development Finance Seminar for AUIS business students, to improve their credit analysis skills and the level of development finance expertise in Kurdistan, awarding 2 scholarships to the best students (see http://www.auis.edu.krd/news/immdf-auis-announce-new-scholarship-program, https://youtu.be/9FNpVY8QKKs, and www.immdf.org -Press Releases-, for more information).

 

Bell plans to continue IMMDF’s lending activities by co-financing with Iraqi banks qualifying projects that generate employment and economic growth in Iraq. In addition, Bells plans to continue and to expand IMMDF’s educational activities in Iraq.

 

Bell is governed by a Board of Directors whose Members, coming from different and complementary backgrounds, contribute substantial commercial lending experience. It is managed by a team whose members, with substantial private sector financing experience, have been working at IMMDF for over 10 years. They include Jorge R. Vila (General Manager), Mazen Abou-Shaban (Finance Manager), and Michael Telford (Senior Financial Consultant).

 

At the present time, Global Communities (www.globalcommunities.org) owns 100% of Bell, although Bell’s Business Plan envisions that other private sector equity investors will join Global Communities as owners of Bell.

 

Bell was named after Gertrude Bell, CBE, al-Khatun (14 July 1886 – 12 July 1926), an English writer, traveller, political officer, administrator and archaeologist who, due to her background, political career and extensive travels in Iraq and the surrounding region, made a major contribution to establishing and helping administer the modern state of Iraq.

 

Mr Vila said “After cooperating with IBBC in Iraq for over 10 years, we are delighted to join it as formal members. We look forward to learning from other member’s experience in Iraq as well as to discuss ways of working together, and, in due course, qualifying projects of UK companies that Bell could co-finance.”

 

Mr Vila can be contacted at jvila@immdf.org and at +962-797-303-801.