Category: Africa

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: WorldRemit to Allow Payouts to MTN’s MobileMoney E-wallets in Uganda

WorldRemit, a UK-based online money transfer service, recently announced that it has expanded its services in Uganda to enable remittances to be delivered through mobile phones via Mobile Telecommunication Network’s (MTN’s) MobileMoney service. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Acumen Fund, Adolf H Lundin Charitable Foundation Invest $1.5m in Farmer Information Service Esoko Networks of Ghana to Expand into East Africa

The Acumen Fund, a New York-based nonprofit venture fund, and the Adolf H Lundin Charitable Foundation, a Liechtenstein-based nonprofit organization, have invested an aggregate sum of USD 1.5 million in an unspecified combination of equity and debt in Esoko Networks Limited (Esoko) of Ghana, a technology platform that aims to strengthen the connection between farmers and markets in Africa with the use of mobile phones. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Acumen Fund, Adolf H Lundin Charitable Foundation Invest $1.5m in Farmer Information Service Esoko Networks of Ghana to Expand into East Africa Posted in Africa, Deals, Technology

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: First Gulf Bank, Monitise to Launch Mobile Banking Services in Middle East

First Gulf Bank (FGB), a commercial bank based in the United Arab Emirates, and Monitise, a UK-based facilitator of mobile money services, reportedly have announced a partnership to offer unspecified “new mobile banking services to clients in the Middle East”[1]. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Airtel, Ghana Post to Expand Mobile Money Service “Airtel Money” to 350 Post Offices

Airtel Ghana, a subsidiary of Indian telecommunications company Bharti Airtel, and Ghana Post, the country’s postal service provider, reportedly have announced a partnership to expand the availability of the Airtel Money service from the previous 150 to all 350 Ghana Post outlets nationwide. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Airtel, Ghana Post to Expand Mobile Money Service “Airtel Money” to 350 Post Offices Posted in Africa, Mobile Money

MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Islamic Social Finance, Transforming Client Complaints into Loyalty, Microinsurance Profitability

“Islamic Social Finance Report 2014,” by Thomson Reuters and the Islamic Research and Training Institute, published by Zawya, 2014, 64 pages, available at: http://www.zawya.com/islamic-finance/isfr/

This report examines opportunities and challenges for Islamic social finance in Bangladesh, Brunei Darussalam, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan and Singapore. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Mambu Sells Software to Nigeria’s One Credit, Premier Kenya, Angola’s Mão Solidária Microfinança

One Credit, a consumer finance company based in Nigeria; Premier Kenya, a financial services provider based in Kenya; and Mão Solidária Microfinança, a microfinance institution based in Angola, recently became customers of Mambu, a provider of web-based software designed for microfinance institutions. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Central Bank of Nigeria Bans Debtors Owing More than $1.5m to Liquidated Banks from Seeking New Credit

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the country’s central banking authority, recently banned the extension of new credit to debtors owing over NGN 250 million (USD 1.5 million) to insolvent banks in the country. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Central Bank of Nigeria Bans Debtors Owing More than $1.5m to Liquidated Banks from Seeking New Credit Posted in Africa, Regulation

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Global Systems for Mobile Association Assists 9 Cellular Network Providers in Africa, Middle East With Mobile Money Interoperability

Global Systems for Mobile Association, a UK-based association of mobile operators and associated companies, reportedly is helping coordinate the deployment of mobile money services for nine mobile network providers operating in Africa and the Middle East. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Global Systems for Mobile Association Assists 9 Cellular Network Providers in Africa, Middle East With Mobile Money Interoperability Posted in Africa, Middle East, Mobile Money

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Zimbabwe Association of Microfinance Institutions (ZAMFI) Warns Against Illegal Deposit-taking by Microfinance Institutions (MFIs)

The executive director of the Zimbabwe Association of Microfinance Institutions (ZAMFI), Mr Godfrey Chitambo, reportedly cautioned the Zimbabwean public recently against microfinance institutions (MFIs) that are taking deposits illegally. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Zimbabwe Association of Microfinance Institutions (ZAMFI) Warns Against Illegal Deposit-taking by Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) Posted in Africa, Regulation, Transparency

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Gulf African Bank of Kenya to Receive Advisory Services Under International Finance Corporation’s Africa Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Finance Program

The International Finance Corporation, the private-investment arm of the US-based World Bank Group, has announced that the Gulf African Bank (GAB), which offers Shariah-compliant products and services in Kenya, has become a member of its Africa Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Finance Program. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Gulf African Bank of Kenya to Receive Advisory Services Under International Finance Corporation’s Africa Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Finance Program Posted in Africa, Deals, Key Players

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: African Development Bank (AfDB) Announces $9m Line of Credit for Moza Banco of Mozambique for SMEs

The African Development Bank (AfDB), a multilateral institution that provides loans and grants to governments and private companies in Africa, recently announced that it will issue a local-currency credit line equivalent to USD 9 million to Moza Banco, a private financial institution that focuses on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Mozambique. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: African Development Bank (AfDB) Announces $9m Line of Credit for Moza Banco of Mozambique for SMEs Posted in Africa, Key Players

MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Responsible Equity Exits in Microfinance; Greenfield Microfinance Models in Africa; Mobile Financial Services Usage Among Rural Women in India, Philippines

“The Art of the Responsible Exit in Microfinance Equity Sales;” by Daniel Rozas, Deborah Drake, Estelle Lahaye, Katharine McKee and Danielle Piskadlo; published by CGAP (Consultative Group to Assist the Poor); April 2014; 32 pages; available at http://www.cgap.org/sites/default/files/Forum-Art-of-the-Responsible-Exit-April-2014.pdf

This paper explores how microfinance investment intermediaries (MIIs) and development finance institutions (DFIs) can exit responsibly from microfinance institutions (MFIs) in which they have invested equity as well as how investors can contribute to healthy development of the overall market. The authors conducted six case studies and interviewed representatives from MIIs, nongovernmental organizations, DFIs, MFIs and merger-and-acquisition specialists. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Airtel Ghana, MicroEnsure, Enterprise Life Roll Out Free Mobile Accident Insurance in Ghana

Airtel Ghana, a subsidiary of Indian telecommunications company Bharti Airtel; MicroEnsure, a UK-based microinsurance company founded by US-based Opportunity International; and Enterprise Life, an insurance company that is part of Ghana-based Enterprise Group, recently announced that 100,000 Airtel Ghana customers have registered for Airtel Insurance. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE EVENT: Mobile Money and Digital Payments Africa Conference and Workshop, May 20-22, 2014, Johannesburg, South Africa

Event Name: Mobile Money and Digital Payments Africa

Event Date: May 20-22, 2014

Event Location: Hyatt Regency Hotel, Johannesburg, South Africa Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROFINANCE EVENT: Mobile Money and Digital Payments Africa Conference and Workshop, May 20-22, 2014, Johannesburg, South Africa Posted in Africa, Events

MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Mobile Money Agents in Uganda; Sustainable Microfinance; Mobile Money for the Global Unbanked

“Agent Network Accelerator Survey: Uganda Country Report 2013;” published by Helix Institute of Digital Finance; January 2014; 26 pages; available at http://www.helix-institute.com/data-and-insights/agent-network-accelerator-survey-%E2%80%93-uganda-country-report-2013-0

This document presents the results of a study conducted by the US-based nonprofit Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and India-based for-profit consultancy MicroSave that seeks to identify the challenges, trends and successes of the mobile money market in Uganda by surveying 2,000 agents. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Kenya Grants Mobile Money Licenses to Finserve Africa, Tangaza Mobile Pay, Zioncell Kenya

The Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK), the regulatory authority for the telecommunications sector of the country, recently granted mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) licenses to Finserve Africa Limited, a subsidiary of Kenya’s Equity Bank, and two Kenyan mobile money transfer services, Tangaza Mobile Pay Limited and Zioncell Kenya Limited. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Kenya Grants Mobile Money Licenses to Finserve Africa, Tangaza Mobile Pay, Zioncell Kenya Posted in Africa, Deals, Technology

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Econet of Zimbabwe to Offer Microloans for Entrepreneurs in Informal Sector

Econet Wireless Zimbabwe, a mobile services provider that is a subsidiary of South Africa-based Econet Wireless Group, recently announced that it will launch a microloan program to target entrepreneurs in the informal sector in Zimbabwe. Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Econet of Zimbabwe to Offer Microloans for Entrepreneurs in Informal Sector Posted in Africa, Technology