DFCU Limited

East Africa,Africa Financial services

The Development Finance Company of Uganda (DFCU) is one of Uganda’s largest commercial banks.

It focuses on business lending to underserved audiences, particularly to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and smallholders operating in the agricultural sector, and to women in business.

DFCU operates over 67 branches and over 100 ATMs across the country

This investment was made under a previous strategy. We disclose information on all our current investments, but narrative information on our pre-2012 investments, when we introduced a new strategy, may be limited.

Our investment

In 2013, CDC supported DFCU with a $10 million loan. The loan was repaid in April 2018.

CDC is a shareholder in DFCU alongside Arise, an investment vehicle created by the Netherland's Rabo Development, Norway's NorFinance and the Dutch DFI, FMO. We have supported the bank since 1964.

Our investment will increase access to affordable mainstream finance to underserved markets.

Expected impact

Many women in Uganda struggle to access finance. With property passing from male to male, women struggle to offer collateral to lenders. And while women own about 40 per cent of the country’s SMEs, and employ about 2 million people, they receive less than 10 per cent of commercial credit.

Our investment in DFCU helps women entrepreneurs overcome the challenges of running a business. DFCU’s Women in Business (WiB) programme has supported several thousand businesswomen by providing loans at preferential rates alongside training, networking opportunities, and mentor programmes.

This enables female entrepreneurs to expand their businesses and to create direct and indirect jobs.

DFCU also provides long-term development finance to the SME sector which is a key driver of economic growth in the country.

Environmental and social aspects

CDC, together with other DFIs, has helped the bank to update and strengthen its existing Environmental and Social Management System.

Key facts


Since 2012, we’ve only invested in Africa and South Asia. Investments outside these regions are from our pre-2012 portfolio.

Africa, East Africa

We have seven priority sectors. However, we continue to invest outside these sectors, largely in the most challenging regions, as new investment supporting any sector helps to underpin the private sector, and create jobs and livelihoods for people.

Financial services
Investment type

We provide capital in three broad ways: direct equity, debt, and intermediated equity (principally through investment funds).

Direct Debt, Direct Equity
Start date

For direct investments, this is the date CDC committed capital to the business or project.

For funds, this is the date that CDC committed capital to the fund.

For underlying fund investments, this is the date that the fund invested capital into the business.e

January 2003

For direct investments, this is the total amount that CDC has committed to the business or project (it may be a combination of equity and debt).

For funds, this is the total amount that CDC has committed to the fund.


This is the investee company’s place of incorporation; or a fund’s jurisdiction.