Sterling Bank obtains $15m ICL facility

The Non-Interest Banking unit of Sterling Bank Plc has attracted a $15 million facility from the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), a multilateral development financial institution and a part of the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) Group.

This praiseworthy development stemmed from the recognition of Sterling Bank’s contribution to the growth of Islamic banking in Nigeria and Africa barely four years after it commenced operations and its ability to use non interest banking contracts to structure transactions in the most unique manner, according to a statement from the lender.

It would be recalled that the Bank in 2014 and 2015 also received a line of US$25 million from the International Islamic Finance Trade Corporation (ITFC) and US$30 million from the ICD.

Both institutions are members of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) Group. In the same vein, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has approved an array of innovative non-interest financial instruments in 2016, which will keep the franchise ahead of industry performance.

ICD was established in November 1999 to support the economic development of its member countries through the provision of finance for private sector projects, promoting competition and entrepreneurship, providing advisory services to the governments and private companies and encouraging cross border investments.

Sterling Bank noted that ICD extended the facility to the Bank in view of its ability to use non interest banking contracts to structure transactions in innovative ways and the judicious use of past facility extended to it, adding that the fund would provide much needed liquidity to finance additional projects for the benefit of the public.

Sterling gave assurance that the institution that it would make good use of the facilities in its custody. It would be recalled that Sterling Bank Plc last year, bagged the Non-Interest Bank of the Year – Africa award, for its non-interest banking window – Sterling Alternative Finance. The award courtesy “The European,” is one of the major categories at the Global Banking & Finance Awards held in London.

The Award was conferred on the Bank based on its success story in the last four years coupled with its ability to use non-interest banking contracts to structure transactions in the most dynamic fashion.

With about 200 branches offering non-interest banking services, the Bank’s coverage is considered the best in Africa, quality of staff, consultants and advisors such as Sheikh Abdulkader Thomas who belongs to several advisory boards globally also gave the Bank an edge over competitors.

The Bank has assured that it will continue to intensify efforts to sell Sterling Alternative Finance offerings to customers and prospects and remain a reference institution in non-interest banking not only in Africa but globally.

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