MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Etisalat, First Bank of Nigeria Merge Easywallet, Firstmonie Mobile Money

Etisalat, a United Arab Emirates-based telecommunications services provider, and First Bank of Nigeria (FBN), a commercial bank based in the Nigerian state of Lagos, recently fused FBN’s “Firstmonie Mobile Money,” a service that allows customers to access their FirstBank accounts as well as transfer funds through their mobile devices [2], and Etisalat’s “Easywallet,” a service allowing money transfers, airtime top-up, and payment for goods and services via mobile phones [3]. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: IFC Raises Stake in Indian Microlender Bandhan Financial Services with $94m Equity Investment

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the US-based World Bank Group that offers financial services to businesses and governments in developing countries with the aim of increasing economic growth, recently raised its stake in Bandhan Financial Services, an India-based microfinance institution (MFI) that offers loans for health emergencies and microenterprise, with an investment of INR 5.8 billion (USD 94.4 million). Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: India Completes Phase I of Jan-Dhan Initiative to Provide Banking Services to Every Household

Arun Jaitley, the Indian Finance Minister, reportedly announced that the government has completed Phase I of the Jan-Dhan initiative, a scheme created by Prime Minister Modi to increase the availability of banking services in India, including credit, savings, insurance, direct benefits transfer and electronic payments. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) Loans $100m to Banco do Nordeste do Brasil to Expand Microcredit

Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social (BNDES), the Brazilian government’s development bank, reportedly has announced that it will loan USD 100 million to Banco do Nordeste do Brasil (BNB), a public bank operating in Brazil’s Northeastern Region. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation Loans $936k to Jordan’s Microfund for Women, $1.7m to Georgia’s JSC MFO Crystal

The Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF), a Luxembourg-based provider of financial services to microfinance institutions (MFIs) and other social businesses, recently informed MicroCapital that it has issued the following two loans: (1) EUR 825,000 (USD 936,000) to Microfund for Women, a microfinance institution (MFI) in Jordan that was founded in 1994 as a program of UK-based NGO Save the Children; and (2) EUR 1.5 million (USD 1.6 million) to Joint Stock Company Microfinance Organization Crystal(JSC MFO Crystal), a microfinance institution (MFI) that was established in Tbilisi, Georgia, in 1998 as the Crystal Fund. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL EVENT: Social Performance Task Force Social Investor Working Group Meeting; March 11-12, 2015; Luxembourg

Event Name: Social Investor Working Group Meeting

Event Date: March 11 – March 12, 2015

Event Location: European Investment Bank (EIB) Headquarters, Luxembourg.

Cost: The event is free of charge, however the proceedings on March 11 are only open to task force members. The sessions on March 12 are open to all investors.

Summary of Event: Conference attendees will discuss topics such as managing social risks; the “Universal Standards for Social Performance Management”; and the fourth iteration of the social performance indicators (SPI4), which have been developed by France-based network Cerise (Comité d’Echanges de Réflexion et d’Information sur les Systèmes d’Epargne-crédit). Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Triodos Investment Management Disburses Loans to Micro-, Small, Medium-sized Enterprise (MSME) Lenders in Cambodia, Colombia, India, Jordan, Uzbekistan

Triodos Investment Management, a subsidiary of Netherlands-based Triodos Bank, recently disbursed loans of undisclosed amounts to Annapurna Microfinance, an Indian microfinance institution (MFI); Asociacion Fondo de Desarrollo (FDL), an MFI in Nicaragua; Crezcamos, a Columbian MFI; Hamkorbank, a commercial bank in Uzbekistan; Intean Poalroath Rongroeurng (IPR), an MFI in Cambodia; Intellegrow, a nonbanking financial company (NBFC) serving small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in India; and Vitas Jordan, an Amman-based MFI [1]. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Manappuram of India Acquires 70% Stake in Asirvad Microfinance of India for $21m

Manappuram Finance, an India-based non-banking finance company, recently acquired 70 percent of the shares of Asirvad Microfinance, a microfinance company based in India that provides enterprise loans, for INR 136 crores (USD 21.4 million). Manappuram will acquire shareholding via a combination of purchasing shares from existing shareholders and subscribing to new equity shares of Asirvad. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Credit Agricole Micofinance Foundation Loans $1.6m to Hattha Kaksekar Limited of Cambodia, $1.2m to Sri Lanka’s VisionFund Lanka

The Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF), a Luxembourg-based provider of financial services to microfinance institutions (MFIs) and other social businesses, recently informed MicroCapital that it has issued the following two loans: (1) EUR 1.5 million (USD 1.6 million) to Hattha Kaksekar Limited (HKL), an MFI based in Cambodia that was founded in 1994 by Organisation Canadienne pour la Solidarite et le Developpement (OCSD) and Oxfam International; and (2) EUR 1.1 million (USD 1.2 million) to VisionFund Lanka, a unit of US-based VisionFund which offers financial services to families living in poverty in the developing world through a network of microfinance institutions in 36 countries. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Crédit Agricole Microfinance Foundation Loans $1.2m to Oxus DRC, DRC’s Hekima, Burkina Faso’s ACFIME

The Grameen Crédit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF), a Luxembourg-based provider of financial services to microfinance institutions (MFIs) and other social businesses, recently informed MicroCapital that it has issued the following three loans: (1) EUR 630,000 (USD 732,000) over a two-year period to Oxus DRC, a for-profit MFI based in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) that was launched in 2013 by the France-based Oxus Group; (2) EUR 271,000 (314,000 USD) over a three-year period to Hekima, a nonprofit specialising in providing group loans to “economically active” poor people in eastern DRC; and (3) EUR 198,000 (USD 230,000) over a three-year period to Agence Communautaire pour le Financement de la Micro Entreprise (ACFIME), a microfinance institution serving low-income populations in Burkina Faso [1]. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) Loans $11.6m to UniCredit Bank Serbia for Housing Purchases, Improvements

The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE), a Luxembourg-based microfinance investment vehicle (MIV), recently announced that it is loaning EUR 10 million (USD 11.6 million) to UniCredit Bank Serbia, a subsidiary of Italy-based financial services company UniCredit Group, for on-lending for housing purchases and home improvement projects. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) Loans $34.6m to Garanti Leasing for On-lending to Micro-, Small Enterprises in Turkey; Banca Intesa Beograd (BIB) for Agriculture in Serbia

The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE), a Luxembourg-based microfinance investment vehicle (MIV), recently extended loans to Garanti Leasing (GL), a leasing subsidiary of Turkey’s Garanti Bank (GB), and Banca Intesa Beograd (BIB), a commercial bank in Serbia that is part of Italy’s Intesa Sanpaolo. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Crédit Agricole Microfinance Foundation Loans $1.2m to Kenya’s Juhudi Kilimo, Uganda Microcredit Foundation (UMF), Uganda’s Encot

The Grameen Crédit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF), a Luxembourg-based provider of financial services to microfinance institutions (MFIs) and other social businesses, recently informed MicroCapital that it has issued the following three loans: (1) EUR 482,000 (USD 555,000) over a two-year period to to Juhudi Kilimo, a for-profit provider of microloans and microinsurance in Kenya; (2) EUR 293,000 (USD 339,000) over a three-year period to Uganda Microcredit Foundation (UMF), a microfinance institution offering financial services to “economically active” Ugandans; and (3) EUR 257,000 (USD 297,000) over a three-year period to Encont, a provider of microloans to rural enterprises in Uganda [1].  Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Muthoot Finance, FIS to Bring Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) to Rural India

Muthoot Finance, an Indian non-banking finance company (NBFC) that offers money transfers and loans using gold items as collateral, recently partnered with Fidelity National Information Services (FIS), a US-based banking and payment technology provider, to introduce Muthoot-branded automated teller machines (ATMs) in rural areas of India. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Swaziland Ministry of Finance to Develop Credit Information Sharing Program as Plan to Increase Financial Inclusion to 75% by 2022

Swaziland’s Ministry of Finance reportedly will launch a program to protect Swazi consumers from over-indebtedness by making consumer credit information available to all credit providers in the country, including development finance institutions, microlenders, savings cooperatives and retailers [1]. Another aim of the effort is to lower the cost of credit to support a government effort to increase financial inclusion in the country from 50 percent in 2011 to 75 percent by 2022 [2]. The principal secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Bheki Bhembe, reportedly said that “The project aims to strengthen credit information flow in Swaziland. By so doing, the project aims to increase access to affordable credit among the under-served market segments.” Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Utkarsh Micro Finance, Advans SA Land $24m in Equity from CDC, Lok Capital, Aavishkaar Goodwell India, International Finance Corporation, Norwegian Microfinance Initiative

The Commonwealth Development Corporation (CDC), a development finance institution owned by the UK government, has announced that it has made an equity investment of USD 11 million in Utkarsh, a northern Indian microfinance institution (MFI) [1]. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Triodos Investment Management Invests in Tunisia’s Enda Inter-Arabe, Uganda’s Entrepreneurs Financial Centre

Triodos Investment Management, a subsidiary of Netherlands-based Triodos Bank, recently disbursed loans of unspecified sizes to Enda Inter-Arabe, a Tunisian financial services provider that is part of Senegal-based non-governmental organization Enda Third-World, and Entrepreneurs Financial Centre (EFC) Uganda, a microfinance institution that provides financial services to micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).  Continue reading