Success Stories

Picture Perfect Business

Much of the world has turned to digital photography, but in the southernmost province of Muthanna people still embrace film. That’s good news for Aiad Otaiwi Aziz, who owns an art and photography shop that develops film.

Beds and Blankets for Nassriya

There’s a modest home furnishings and textiles shop on Al-Haboby Street in Nassriya. Sixty-four year old Musa Mohammed Idi has worked there all of his life. Musa’s father and grandfather ran the shop before him.

Kurd Hotelier Aims to Please Vacationing Iraqi Families

During the long Iraqi summer when temperatures soar to 45˚ or more, families in southern Iraq travel north to the Kurdish hills for cooler temperatures. Many stay or dine in one of Sadi Kadr Amen’s three hotels and two restaurants.

Khadir Sulaiman Operates Profitable Pickle Shops Thanks to ICF-SME Assistance

Pickles are part of the daily diet in Northern Iraq. And for the past 13 years, Khadir Sulaiman, 33, has helped keep Dahuk kitchens well stocked with savory vegetables. To make the jump from wholesaler to retailer, however, Khadir needed a loan.

Growing Company Gets ICF-SME Boost

If you buy an aspirin in Baghdad, chances are it may have passed through Pharmacist Bushra Zaki’s hands. Her company, Al-Zumurrud, imports and distributes medicines through its warehouse in the Karada section of the city near Al-Watheq Square. Recently, she secured an attractively-priced $60,000 loan from Iraqi Middle East Bank so she could obtain a license to become the Iraqi sales agent for several foreign drug companies. Currently, most drugs and medicines are purchased in neighboring countries and brought into Iraq by traders. “Having my own agency for Iraq will allow me to import high-quality medicines directly from reputable companies and sell them at a lower price,” says Bushra.

Timely Loan Brings Tidy Profit

Sixty years ago, Abdul-Jabber was a blacksmith in a dusty Sulaymaniyah souk. Today his son, Vhder Abdul-Jabbar Khader, runs a home appliance and construction business that nets $5,000 a month in profit.

Affordable Financing Turns Dreams into Reality

When Mohammed Abbas Fadhil Al-Alwani was growing up on a farm in Anbar province he dreamed of having his own integrated agricultural business. In 2006, he finally managed to buy 15 dunums (nine acres) of land near the Euphrates River. But it wasn’t until late 2009 when he obtained a low cost SME loan for $63,500 from North Bank that his business began to take shape.

Rebuilding for the Future

Baghdad boasts a tranquil riverside corniche, aromatic coffee shops packed with intellectuals and colorful markets selling antique books, engraved copper artifacts and exotic textiles. What the city does not have at the moment, however, are tourists.

Timely SME Loan Saves a Business

Incorporated in the summer of 2009 with financial assistance from the USAID-Tijara Provincial Economic Growth Program, the Iraqi Company for Financing SMEs (ICF-SME) provides lower cost financing to private banks that use the money to make small and medium enterprise loans to companies in need of temporary operating capital. The program is designed to help small business grow into larger ones. Occasionally timely SME loans can spell the difference between survival and bankruptcy.