Cases & Deals

Grameen Aval Colombia is the first Colombian entity to be operated directly by Grameen Trust

Client(s) Grameen Aval Colombia

Jones Day advised Grameen Trust, a non-profit organization that uses microcredit as a tool for fighting poverty, in establishing a joint venture in Colombia with Fundación Luis Carlos Sarmiento Angulo.

Jones Day negotiated the structure of the joint venture entity and the terms of the organizational documents.

Jones Day counsel Nicholas Rodríguez says, "Jones Day is honored and pleased to be again supporting Grameen in the expansion and promotion of poverty-focused microcredit programs throughout Latin America and the rest of the world. Jones Day recently advised on Grameen's microcredit joint venture in Mexico and is currently working with Grameen on a joint venture in China, as well as on projects in other parts of the world. Having been born in Medellin and being of Colombian descent, I am particularly proud of this project, and am confident that it will assist in alleviating poverty in Colombia."

Mr. Rodríguez noted that the U.S. and Colombian attorneys worked collaboratively and creatively to address the challenges in setting up a joint venture. Mr. Rodríguez says, "As is typical with joint venture structures, the parties spent a fair amount of time working out the governance structure."

He explains, "Although the joint venture will be managed operationally by Grameen Bank personnel, Fundación Luis Carlos Sarmiento Angulo will have equal representation on the board of directors."

Grameen Aval Colombia's start-up capital will be made by Fundación Luis Carlos Sarmiento Angulo and its affiliates, but it is expected that the new entity will be self-sustainable in the future.

Grameen Trust has supported the development of 141 microcredit projects in 38 cities by providing training at an initial stage. Currently, ten of these projects are so-called Build-Operate-Manage (BOM) projects in which Grameen Trust directly implements the projects in order to achieve rapid implementation.