Bellwether gets $2.4 mn from Dutch firm

Feb 2007
India , February, 01 2007 - Bellwether Microfinance Fund (BW) has received an investment of $2.4 million from Dutch financial major, Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden NV ('FMO').

Post this investment, FMO has a 18.6 per cent holding of the total paid up equity in the BW. FMO is the third foreign institutional investor to invest in Bellwether.

Set up as India’s first microfinance venture capital fund in 2005, Bellwether has invested till date Rs 19 crore. It has so far committed 10 investments aggregating Rs 27.5 crore in a wide variety of MFIs. Over 80 per cent of its funds committed till now have been outside the four southern states, the traditional microfinance markets.

Private investors, the Hivos-Triodos Fund of the Netherlands and the Gray Ghost Microfinance Fund of USA are the major investors in Bellwether. The two investors have also subscribed to additional shares amounting to $1.2 million each.  

"FMO’s investment is significant to us at Bellwether and the emerging microfinance sector in the country. This will increase the availability of much needed Equity financing to microfinance institutions", Prasad, co-founder of Bellwether, stated in a press release here on Wednesday.

Bellwether is based in Hyderabad and is managed by its fund management company, Caspian Advisors Private Limited. Caspian is composed of a team of microfinance experts.


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