International Finance Corporation


Organization Profile: 

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in developing countries. IFC works in more than 100 countries, using their capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries. IFC works to leverage the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity as economies grappled with the impacts of global compounding crises.

IFC’s offerings are designed to meet the specific needs of clients in different industries, with a special focus on agribusiness and forestry, infrastructure, manufacturing, services, and financial markets. It helps countries develop their private sectors through: (i) providing direct finance to companies in the form of loans, equity investments, debt securities and guarantees, (ii) mobilizing capital from other lenders and investors through loan participations, parallel loans and other means, and (iii) advising businesses and governments to encourage private investment and improve the investment climate. IFC is also able to support early-stage project development to seed investment opportunities, in some cases working to create markets where none existed, especially in low-income countries and those affected by fragility and conflict.

In the Agribusiness and Forestry sector, IFC invests across the supply chain — from farm to retail — to help boost production, increase liquidity, improve logistics and distribution, and expand access to credit for small farmers. It aims to bring land into sustainable production, improve productivity by transferring technologies and practices, and make the best use of water and other natural resources. 

Financing Instrument: Loans, Equity, Quasi-equity, Blended Finance, Guarantees, Grants, Trade Finance, Risk Management Products, Subnational Finance, Early-stage Development Capital.

Project scale:

  • Loans: IFC loan tenors typically range between 7 - 12 years. IFC also makes loans to intermediary banks, leasing companies, and other financial institutions for on-lending.
  • Equity: IFC generally invests between 5 percent and 20 percent of a company’s equity. Companies IFC invests in are encouraged to broaden share ownership through public listings, thereby deepening local capital markets. IFC also invests through profit- participating loans, convertible loans, and preferred shares. 

In fiscal year 2022, IFC committed a record $32.8 billion in 296 projects to private companies and financial institutions in developing countries.

Recipient countries regions/country groups: Global (emerging markets and developing countries).

Recipient categories: Businesses

Eligibility Criteria:

To be eligible for IFC funding, a project must meet a number of criteria, including:

  • be located in a developing country that is a member of IFC;
  • be in the private sector;
  • be technically sound;
  • have good prospects of being commercially and sustainably viable;
  • benefit the local economy; and
  • be environmentally and socially sound, satisfying IFC’s environmental and social standards as well as those of the host country.

IFC does not lend directly to micro, small, and medium enterprises or individual entrepreneurs, but many of its investment clients are financial intermediaries that on-lend to smaller businesses.

Application guidelines: 

There is no standard application form for IFC financing. A company or entrepreneur, foreign or domestic, seeking to establish a new venture or expand existing operations can approach IFC directly. Proposals can be submitted to IFC’s industry departments; regional departments at IFC headquarters in Washington; or the regional field office closest to the location of the proposed project. After this initial contact and a preliminary review, IFC may proceed by requesting a detailed feasibility study or business plan to determine whether to appraise the project.

A detailed description of what information to include in the investment proposal can be found on the IFC website:

Last updated: 29 August 2023

Publication Date
Wednesday, 10 March 2021
Applicable location
Forest conservation and management
Private sector and industry
Climate change
Renewable energy
Financing opportunities