Q BUSINESS – Are Costa Rica’s importadoras (retailers) in financial trouble? Earlier this year, one of the country major retailers, Casa Blanca, went on the financial downslide, ending up in receivership, “convenio preventivo” in Spanish.This week, comes the news that Grupo Monge was able to land a loan to refinance existing debt.
The Grupo Monge retail brands in Costa Rica include: Monge, El Verdugo and El Gallo Mas Gallo.
The Elfinancierocr.com reports says the consumer goods retailer will receive a US$120 million injection to strengthen its consolidation and growth strategy following the approval of a syndicated loan over a three-year term, through a loan led by the Panamanian bank, Bladex.
The document also states that the transaction attracted the interest of 15 financial institutions in Panama, Costa Rica, Colombia, Guatemala, El Salvador, Curacao, Dominican Republic and the United States, most of which represent new banking relationships for Grupo Monge.
“We are very pleased to have concluded a very successful transaction, which will allow us to continue growing and consolidate our business in the markets we operate. This operation is the second international transaction syndicated over US$100 million for Grupo Monge, highlighting the confidence of Regional and international banks,” said Gaston Monge, general manager of the business group.
For its part, “Bladex is very pleased to have successfully executed this syndicated loan for Grupo Monge, which provides the Group with access to new banking relationships and medium-term financing,” said Alejandro Jaramillo, executive vice president at Bladex.
Grupo Monge, established in 1974 in Costa Rica, is one of the largest consumer goods retailers and largest consumer financing providers in Central America. It operates a combined 518 stores in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Peru.
The company is wholly owned by the Monge family and is managed by an experienced management team and a board of directors with extensive experience in the financial sector and the retail industry.
Banco Latinoamericano de Exportaciones y Importaciones, S.A. (Bladex), renamed “Foreign Trade Bank of Latin America” in 2009, with headquarters in Panama, the Bank officially began operations on January 2, 1979. It was the first Latin American bank to be listed on the NYSE in 1992. The bank was one of the tenants in One World Trade Center. It is one of the Companies listed on the New York Stock Exchange.