GuarantCo, a Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG) company, has provided a USD 42.5 million, on-demand guarantee with a 5-year tenor supporting Classic Fashion Apparel Industry (Classic Fashion), Jordan’s largest garment manufacturer.
With GuarantCo’s guarantee supporting Classic Fashion, Standard Chartered Jordan will be able to extend an additional facility. The proceeds of the loan will be used for the construction of a textile processing mill, a centralised cloth cutting station, new laundry facility, and a carton and poly bag factory. The guarantee will enable Classic Fashion to employ and train around 1,000 Syrian refugees, as well as Jordanian youth and migrant workers living in Jordan, over the next four years.
Jordan, in cooperation with partnering countries, is in the process of implementing the ‘Jordan Compact’, a political commitment to integrate Syrian refugees in the Jordanian labour market. Classic Fashion has embraced the concept of combining its own business model with the wider humanitarian agenda to provide employment to vulnerable populations, particularly women, to improve inclusive economic growth.
As part of this initiative, Classic Fashion is involved in the “Centre for Excellence in Garment Manufacturing”, a vocational training centre and a joint venture between Classic Fashion and the Ministry of Labour. It was launched in November 2017 to provide skills development for Jordanian youth and Syrian refugees, particularly women, to improve their chances of employment. GuarantCo, through the PIDG Technical Assistance Facility, is providing a grant to co-finance the training activities of the “Centre for excellence in garment manufacturing”.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Barbara Joziasse, Ambassador of the Netherlands to Jordan said: “The Netherlands supports the development of physical and financial infrastructure for long term private sector growth, through PIDG, FMO (The Dutch Development Bank) and other instruments. In Jordan and for the next four years, the Embassy of the Netherlands is supporting Jordan’s economic reform efforts in multiple areas including education, skills development, improving the business climate and creating employment opportunities. We are happy to be here today to celebrate PIDG’s affiliate GuarantCo’s partnership with Classic Fashion which will generate additional jobs for Syrian refugees, and Jordanians as well as provide important technical skills to Jordanian and Syrian youth through the Centre of Excellence in Garment Manufacturing.”
Andrew Bainbridge, Chair at PIDG said: “Through GuarantCo and TAF, we are delighted to contribute to a transaction which will provide valuable training, and support to Syrian refugees and Jordanian youths. Meaningful employment and development of new skills is vital to empower economic growth in the region.”
Lasitha Perera, CEO at GuarantCo said: “We are proud to support Classic Fashion with their goal to create opportunities for vulnerable populations. This transaction demonstrates to commercial lenders how GuarantCo can be engaged to support viable businesses in similar territories in order to provide employment, empower women and drive inclusive economic growth in a country.”
Sanal Kumar, Chairman and Managing Director at Classic Fashion Apparel Industry said: “Classic Fashion Apparel Industry Ltd Co. is honoured to be associating with GuarantCo and PIDG on this journey. Classic Fashion’s endeavour to be the most preferred employer in Jordan and the most preferred vendor to our customers worldwide, will receive a further boost through this strategic collaboration between our like-minded organisations that strive to bring about positive changes in the lives of people in the society we live and work in.”
Muhannad Mukahall, Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Jordan said: “We are truly privileged to lend our expertise and resources in support of our clients. Standard Chartered Bank strongly believes in the importance of financing the Industrial sector, thus increasing production and capacity of this sector which contributes to supporting the national economy. We are proud that our relationship with Classic Fashion spans over 11 years, and this agreement solidifies our endeavour to strengthen our relationship with our clients to help them to grow their business.”