Category: Africa

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Sanad Fund for MSME Lends $20m to Amen Bank for Very Small, Small, Medium-sized Enterprises in Tunisia

The Sanad Fund for MSME (micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises), a Germany-based fund providing loans in the Middle East and North Africa, recently provided a senior loan of USD 20 million to Amen Bank, a Tunisia-based private commercial bank. Continue reading

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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

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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

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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

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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 unit of Zambian microfinance institution EFC. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PAPER WRAP-UP: Exploring New Frontiers – The Potential of Impact Investments in Microinsurance

By Jeremy Leach, Sandisiwe Ncube and Anand Menon; published by the Microinsurance Network; 2014; 49 pages; available at http://www.microinsurancenetwork.org/sites/default/files/MICRO_NetworkInvestor_PaperWEB.pdf

Microinsurance, a risk mitigation and management tool for people with low incomes, has grown from 78 million lives covered in 2005 to approximately 263 million lives in 2013, with a potential market estimated at 3 billion to 4 billion policies generating USD 30 billion to USD 50 billion in annual premium revenue. Total demand for microinsurance is growing approximately 10 percent per year, which the authors argue points to increasing investment opportunities and a promising business case for investors. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Triodos Sustainable Trade Fund Opens $2m Credit Line for Thai Organic Rice Company Urmatt, Cocoa Producer ICAM Uganda

The Triodos Sustainable Trade Fund, which provides trade finance loans to co-operatives and private companies operating in “sustainable” agricultural value chains, recently opened a credit line for Urmatt Limited, a Thai company producing and processing certified organic rice, and ICAM Chocolate Uganda Limited, a subsidiary of the Italian firm Industria Cioccolato e Affini Morbegno (ICAM) that sources organically grown green cocoa beans directly from local farmers in Uganda. The funding, which is capped at USD 2 million [3], is intended to enable these two companies to pay “fair” prices to farmers and improve their cash flow management [1]. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: MasterCard Labs for Financial Inclusion in East Africa Launched with $19m Donation from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

MasterCard, a US-based global payments and technology company, recently announced that it is launching the MasterCard Labs for Financial Inclusion, which is intended to generate new ideas and financial tools to promote financial inclusion in East Africa via a three-year grant in the amount of USD 11 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, a US-based nonprofit that supports innovations in health, education and other fields. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: CGAP (Consultative Group to Assist the Poor), The MasterCard Foundation Award $900k to Advans Cote d’Ivoire, MFS Africa, Money Express for Branchless Banking Projects in Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal

CGAP (Consultative Group to Assist the Poor), a US-based nonprofit that aims to facilitate the expansion of financial access, and The MasterCard Foundation, a Canada-based nonprofit that aims to promote youth learning and financial inclusion in emerging markets, recently awarded a total of USD 900,000 to three projects in countries of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) to expand the availability of banking in the region. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Ghana Microfinance Institutions Network Adopts Code of Conduct in Collaboration with SEEP Network

The Ghana Microfinance Institutions Network (GHAMFIN), an association of 80 microfinance institutions (MFIs) serving 60,000 clients in Ghana, recently announced that it plans to adopt a code of conduct for its members following the closure of 46 MFIs in the country during 2013. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Foundation for International Community Assistance (FINCA) Launches Microfinance Operations in Owerri, Nigeria

The Foundation for International Community Assistance (FINCA), a US-based nonprofit microfinance network, has formally launched the operations of FINCA Microfinance Bank (FINCA MfB) in Owerri, Imo, Nigeria, following the issuance of its license by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on October 30, 2014. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Développement international Desjardins (DiD) Establishes Local Group Automating Microfinance Institution Operations in Senegal

Développement international Desjardins (DiD), a Canada-based nonprofit organization that focuses on providing technical support and investment to community financial institutions, recently announced the successful completion of a five-year long project to expand the computerization of the operations of microfinance institutions (MFIs) in Senegal. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Credit Suisse to Fund Opportunity International’s “Empowering Generational Change Through Education” in Africa, Asia, Latin America

Credit Suisse, a Swiss global financial services company with operations in 50 countries, has agreed to donate an undisclosed sum to Opportunity International, a US-based nonprofit providing microfinance in 22 countries, to launch a three-year program entitled “Empowering Generational Change Through Education” that focuses on lending for education initiatives. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Millicom’s Tanzanian Arm Distributes Profits of $1.8m to Tigo Pesa Mobile Money Customers

Millicom International Cellular, a Luxembourg-based telecommunications company that operates the brand Tigo, recently announced that its Tanzanian unit will distribute third quarter profits of TZS 3 billion (USD 1.8 million) to users and agents of Tigo Pesa, a mobile money service accessed by 3.6 million customers. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Triodos Sells 14.5% Equity Stake in K-rep Bank of Kenya to Existing Shareholders Centum Investment, K-rep Group

The Triodos Sustainable Finance Foundation, a unit of the Netherlands-based Triodos Bank, recently sold its entire 14.5-percent equity stake in K-rep Bank of Kenya, a commercial bank founded in 1999 that provides services to low-income people. Continue reading

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