Regulators at the central bank have granted Sidama Microfinance Institution a banking license, finalising its transition into Sidama Bank. Tadesse Hatiya, the Bank's founding president, leads it into the industry with 575 million Br in paid-up capital. Shareholders have subscribed to 1.45 billion Br of equity. The institution started off as the Sidama Rural Women's Credit & Saving Scheme in 1994 before becoming a full-fledged microfinance institution (MFI) four years later. It is among several MFIs transitioning into banks. Oromia Credit & Saving S.C. is joining the industry as Siinqee Bank, while its counterpart based in the Amhara Regional State is in the process of becoming Tsedey Bank. Sidama will have six years to raise its paid-up capital to five billion Birr to meet the central bank's minimum threshold.
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