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Global Communities and Vitas Group Join SME Finance Forum

Published 05/25/2016 by Global Communities

Global Communities and Vitas Group Join SME Finance Forum

Global Communities is pleased to announce that the organization and its subsidiary Vitas Group, were recently accepted into the SME Finance Forum global member network.

Established by the G-20 Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion (GPFI) and managed by IFC, the SME Finance Forum brings together private and public sector players to share knowledge, spur innovation, and provide a new voice in policy discourse. With the ultimate goal of the Forum being to close the SME finance gap, estimated at over $2 trillion worldwide, the Forum’s founding members include banks, technology disruptors, regulators and development finance institutions like Global Communities/Vitas Group, that are committed to accelerating financing for small businesses.

“Our members are diverse in terms of the type of organization as well as their size and regional focus,” said SME Finance Forum CEO, Matthew Gamser. “However, they have one thing in common – they are all helping small businesses grow.”

“We are excited to welcome Global Communities and Vitas Group as members of the SME Finance Forum,” added Mr. Gamser. “Global Communities and Vitas are dedicated to filling the SME finance gap by serving growing businesses with loans from $10,000 to $250,000 through the Vitas Group portfolio, and by engaging commercial banks in the SME market through three loan guaranty facilities. These approaches not only increase access to finance for a crucial ‘missing middle’ of growing economies, but also ensure that local institutions are part of the process.”

“We are thrilled to join a network of so many important voices in the financial inclusion space,” said Elissa McCarter LaBorde, Vice President of Development Finance at Global Communities and CEO of Vitas Group. “We are excited to share lessons from our work across the SME spectrum and to be part of the dialogue on how to ensure that more small and medium businesses, and more economies, can thrive.”

The SME Finance Forum works to expand access to finance for small and medium businesses. The Forum operates a global membership network that brings together financial institutions, technology companies, and development finance institutions to share knowledge, spur innovation, and promote the growth of SMEs. Established by the G20 Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion, the Forum is managed by the International Finance Corporation. To learn more about the SME Finance Forum and see the full Member list, visit

Global Communities is an international non-profit organization founded in 1952 that works closely with communities worldwide to bring about sustainable changes that improve the lives and livelihoods of the vulnerable. Global Communities believes that the people who understand their needs best are the people of the community itself. Learn more at

Vitas Group is a commercial holding company created and owned by Global Communities as a long-term vehicle for fulfilling Global Communities’ mission in micro-, small- and medium-enterprise finance. Vitas Group prides itself on a community-driven approach to lending, and building lasting partnerships in the place where we work. Vitas is 21 percent owned by Bamboo Finance, and currently operates subsidiaries in Lebanon, Romania, Jordan, and Palestine, and shares its brand with the Global Communities institution in Iraq. For more information, please visit