The multilateral development bank has bought, in local currency, the equivalent of US$50mn in senior notes issued by MercadoLibre's FIDC fund, established to provide a source of financing for SMEs.
MercadoLibre merchants can apply for funding via the company's MercadoCrédito platform.
Technology built into MercadoCrédito analyses the applicant's history of sales flows and transactions as part of the evaluation process.
"IDB Invest's financing will allow the FIDC fund to increase its visibility and consolidate its trajectory, helping to mobilize financial resources from alternative sources, including local institutional investors and multilateral financial institutions," IDB Invest said in a statement.
SMEs are key job-generators in Latin America.
Founded in 1999 and headquartered in Argentina, MercadoLibre also operates a payment and digital wallet platform, MercadoPago. In September it launched a solution that allows MercadoPago clients to invest funds held in their digital wallet in a structured fund administered by local lender BIND Banco Industrial.