RFL Electronics Limited

South Asia Manufacturing

RFL Electronics Ltd (RFL), is a Bangladeshi electronic goods manufacturer, and a sister firm to the PRAN-RFL Group.

Established in 1981, the group started out producing cast iron goods for rural farmers. The group has since expanded into various sectors, and is one of the largest private employers in Bangladesh outside the garment industry.

Our investment

In 2017, CDC made a $15 million debt investment into RFL. Our capital will be used to acquire equipment for a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility producing consumer electronic goods for the local market.

CDC is investing alongside Standard Chartered Bank Bangladesh, which is providing an additional $3 million in a total finance package of $18 million.

This is our first direct corporate debt investment in Bangladesh.

Expected impact

Consumer electronic goods can go a long way to improving people’s livelihood if they can be purchased at affordable prices. Our investment will help modernise RFL’s manufacturing base in Bangladesh to support the country’s growing demand for reasonably priced consumer goods.

The RFL manufacturing base is located 25km from Dhaka and will produce electronic appliances ranging from TVs and refrigerators, to rice cookers and electric irons, all sold under the company’s Vision and Vigo brands.

Our investment will support the creation of 1500 manufacturing jobs, half of which are expected to be for women.

With total employment expected to reach 2,500 over the course of a seven-year investment, RFL will hire experienced factory managers from Dhaka and other workers from neighbouring towns.

Environmental and social aspects

We are working with the company to enhance performance and management in areas such as labour and working conditions, environmental management, and fire safety.

The company has made significant progress in the past year and is now rolling out some improvements to the wider PRAN Group, which has a large footprint in Bangladesh.

We will continue to provide significant environmental and social support.

Key facts

Status:
Active
Region

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

:
South Asia
Countries:
Bangladesh
Sector

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.

:
Manufacturing
Investment type

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

:
Direct Debt
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

:
December 2017
Amount

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.

:
$15m
Domicile

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

:
Bangladesh