IFC invests in South Sudan hotel 

Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, June 5, 2023 – To support the development of South Sudan's tourism infrastructure, IFC today announced an investment in Dembesh Hotel in Juba that will help finance the hotel's renovation and expansion, creating jobs during and after the construction phase.

IFC's $7.5 million investment comprises a $3.75 million loan from IFC's own account and a $3.75 million concessional loan from the blended finance facility of the International Development Association's (IDA) Private Sector Window.

The expansion and renovation of the hotel, located in central Juba close to government offices, embassies, and commercial centers, will make it more attractive to business travelers and tourists, helping meet growing demand for high quality accommodation in the city.

The project is expected to create 100 jobs during the construction phase and 50 jobs once the hotel is operational. IFC will also provide advisory services to help the hotel reduce its environmental footprint through improved energy and water efficiency—and to become EDGE certified. EDGE is an IFC green building certification system focused on making residential and commercial buildings more resource efficient.

This investment was announced on the sidelines of the Africa CEO Forum, co-hosted by IFC, in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.

"IFC's investment in Dembesh Hotel signals to the international investment community that South Sudan is open for business," said Ayesheshim Teka, CEO of Dembesh Hotel. "This hotel has long been a preferred destination for public and private sector leaders visiting South Sudan. The expansion and renovation of the hotel will raise standards of the local hospitality sector – particularly as the hotel will then be rebranded to the international chain, Best Western Plus."

"IFC's investment in Dembesh Hotel is a vote of confidence in South Sudan's future," said Cheick-Oumar Sylla, IFC Director for North Africa and Horn of Africa. "The hotel will provide much-needed accommodation for business travelers and tourists visiting Juba, creating jobs and boosting economic activity."

IFC works to develop critical infrastructure in countries, including hotels. IFC's long-term investment perspective and flexibility is particularly relevant for hotel investments which mostly require long-term financing, long grace periods, and flexible financial instruments.

The investment in Dembesh Hotel is part of IFC's broader commitment to support areas affected by fragility and conflict. IFC has pledged that, by 2030, 40 percent of its annual commitments will be in IDA-eligible and Fragile and Conflict-Affected Situation (FCS) countries, and that 15-20 percent of these investments will be in IDA countries that are classified as very low income and FCS.

Source: IFC