Category: Eastern Europe and Central Asia

 MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Commits $5m to Belarusian Minsk Transit Bank (MTB) for Onlending to Micro-, Small, Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs)

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a UK-based multilateral financial institution that finances companies in countries that are transitioning to open market economies, recently agreed to commit a local-currency,  senior loan worth up to USD 5 million to Minsk Transit Bank (MTB), a government-backed bank that provides loans to micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in Belarus.  Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Dutch Development Bank Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappijvoor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO) Loans $20m to Armenia’s Ameriabank

The Dutch development bank Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappijvoor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO) recently agreed to loan USD 20 million to Ameriabank Closed Joint Stock Company (CJSC) (Ameriabank), a commercial bank in Armenia. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Airtel, Grameen Foundation, Plan International to Launch Mobile Money Platform for Savings Groups in Uganda Under Which All Group Members Must Approve Each Transaction Via SMS

The Ugandan subsidiary of Bharti Airtel, an Indian telecommunications services provider with operations in 150 countries; Grameen Foundation, a US-based nonprofit organization; and the Ugandan arm of Plan International, a UK-based child rights and anti-poverty nonprofit that operates in 48 countries, have entered into a partnership to launch a mobile money platform that is intended to serve savings groups in Uganda.  Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Incofin, Triodos Invest in Microfinance Institution (MFI) Arvand of Tajikistan

Belgium-based Incofin Investment Management (Incofin), a private company that manages funds investing in microfinance institutions (MFIs), and Netherlands-based Triodos Investment Management (Triodos), the subsidiary of Triodos Bank that manages funds in “energy and climate, emerging markets, arts and culture and sustainable real estate”[2], jointly acquired a 36-percent equity stake in Microcredit Deposit-Taking Organization Arvand (Arvand), an MFI that operates in and around Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan as well as in the country’s Sughd region. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Absolute Portfolio Management’s Vision Microfinance Funds Loan $5m to Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) in Georgia, Bolivia, Tajikistan

Absolute Portfolio Management (APM), an arm of Austria-based asset management group C-Quadrat, disbursed a total of USD 5 million as loans from its two Vision Microfinance funds, the Dual Return Fund-Vision Microfinance and the Dual Return Fund-Vision Microfinance Local Currency, to unidentified microfinance institutions (MFIs) in Georgia, Bolivia and Tajikistan. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Lends $5m to DemirBank of Azerbaijan to Promote Residential, Business Energy-Efficiency Projects

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a UK-based development bank that operates in eastern Europe, central Asia and northern Africa, has loaned USD 5 million to DemirBank, a commercial bank in Azerbaijan that focuses on lending to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), with the intention of promoting projects that reduce energy use in the country. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Government of Canada, International Finance Corporation (IFC) Support Small, Medium-sized Agricultural Enterprises in Ukraine

The Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada (DFATD) recently informed MicroCapital that the government of Canada and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private-investment arm of the World Bank Group, plan to work together to provide an unspecified level of financial support and technical advice to small and medium-sized agricultural enterprises in Ukraine. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: World Bank Group Donating $22m to, Investing $2m in Agriculture Commercialization in Tajikistan

The International Development Association (IDA), the arm of the World Bank Group (WBG) that offers interest-free credits and grants to the world’s 82 poorest countries, is planning to disburse a grant of USD 22 million to support the “Tajikistan Agriculture Commercialization Project”[1] of the government of Tajikistan. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: “KazAgro” National Management Holding of Kazakhstan Privatizing 48 Subsidiaries, Mostly Microfinance Institutions (MFIs)

Astana-based “KazAgro” National Management Holding Joint Stock Company (“KazAgro”), the state-owned agency responsible for the implementation of national policy on agribusiness development in the Republic of Kazakhstan, reportedly has announced that it plans to sell 45 subsidiaries within the second phase of the ongoing privatization process in the country. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Central Bank of Tajikistan Unveil Draft for Mobile Banking Regulations

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a UK-based multilateral institution, and the central bank of Tajikistan have been collaborating to launch a regulatory framework with the aim of utilizing technology and retail infrastructure to help banks and other organizations offer financial services outside of bank branches in the country.  Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) Launches India-based InfrasoftTech’s OMNIEnterprise Microfinance Software in Gaza, Jordan, Syria, West Bank

InfrasoftTech, a financial software firm that was founded in 1995 and is based in Mumbai, India, reportedly has announced that the microfinance department of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), which provides education, health care, social services has adopted InfrasoftTech’s OMNIEnterprise Microfinance Solution, a banking software system across its operations in: Gaza, Jordan, Syria and the West Bank. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE EVENT: AlHuda Center of Islamic Banking and Economics to Host 4th Global Islamic Microfinance Forum, November 1-4, 2014, Dubai, UAE

Event Name: 4th Global Islamic Microfinance Forum

Event Date: Conference: November 1-2, 2014; Post-conference workshop: November 3-4, 2014

Event Location: Dubai, United Arab Emirates  Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Loans $8m to Mongolia’s Khan Bank for On-Lending to Support Value Chains That Include Micro-, Small, Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs)

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a UK-based multilateral institution, reportedly has issued a loan of MNT 15 billion (USD 8 million) to Khan Bank, a commercial bank based in Mongolia, as the final tranche of a total of MNT 47 billion (USD 25 million) to be on-lent by Khan Bank to suppliers of micro-, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in Mongolia.  Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Incofin Investment Management Launches ProPulse Fund for Private Institutional Investors to Access Microfinance Institutions in Emerging Economies

Incofin Investment Management (Incofin IM), a microfinance fund manager based in Belgium, has announced the launch of its ProPulse Fund, which is designed specifically for private institutional investors to provide financing to entrepreneurs in emerging economies via microfinance institutions (MFIs) in response to “the large demand for local currency loans.” Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Effects of Female Leadership on Microfinance Institutions (MFIs); Impact of Microcredit in Morocco; Social Performance Management Guide

Female Leadership, Performance, and Governance in Microfinance Institutions;” by Reidar Øystein Strøm, Bert D’Espallier and Roy Mersland; published by Elsevier; 2014; 16 pages; available for purchase at http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378426614000284

This report examines the relationship between the performance of microfinance institutions (MFIs) and whether women occupy high management positions, including CEO, chair or director, in those MFIs. Continue reading

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