by TINTSWALO BALOYI
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – WILDERNESS, an Africa-based conservation and hospitality company, has secured financing to accelerate entrance into new markets and ultimately conserve larger areas of land.
An African market first, Standard Bank acted as the Sustainability Structuring Agent and Sole Lender, providing tailored financing to the company previously known as Wilderness Safaris.
Figures were not disclosed.
Keith Vincent, Wilderness Chief Executive Officer, said the nature conservation financing provided by Standard Bank contributes to the ethos of the organisation, whose strategy is to ensure the world, through sustainable conservation tourism, will always have a version of its iconic wild places that are unfenced, untamed and unpredictable.
“Our shared African vision and commitment to contributing to a sustainable continent (and ultimately planet) made Standard Bank the right partner for us,” Vincent said.
Wilderness’ mission is to double the amount of land it helps conserve in the next decade.
“We believe that with the support of our guests, partners and greater collective it is achievable. A vision we’ll never stop striving to achieve,” Vincent said.
Operating in eight countries, with more than 60 exceptional camps and lodges, Wilderness helps protect some 2,3 million hectares (6 million acres).
Brydone Graham, Head of Corporate Financing Solutions at Standard Bank’s Corporate and Investment Banking (CIB) division, said Wilderness presents a unique opportunity for Standard Bank to support a key partner in the conservation of the continent and drive its growth in a sustainable, inclusive manner.
The executive noted Africa houses significant examples of the globe’s most valuable biodiversity.
“Protecting this biodiversity in a sustainable and inclusive manner for local communities is a cornerstone for a prosperous future for Africa as a whole,” Graham said.
– CAJ News