Category: Latin America

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Fairtrade Access Fund Loans $1.8m to Coffee, Cacao, Sugar Cooperatives COAGRICSAL of Honduras, UCOSEMUN of Nicaragua, NORANDINO of Peru

The Fairtrade Access Fund (FAF), an affiliate of German NGO Fairtrade International that provides loans to farmers in developing countries, recently disbursed a total equivalent to USD 1.8 million to Cooperativa Agrícola Cafetalera San Antonio Limitada (COAGRISCAL) of Honduras, Unión de Cooperativas de Servicios Múltiples (UCOSEMUN) of Nicaragua and Cooperativas de Servicios Múltiples Norandino (NORANDINO) of Peru. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Microcredit in Mexico, Impact Investing and Microfinance, Microinsurance and Preventing Child Labor

 “Win Some Lose Some? Evidence from a Randomized Microcredit Program Placement Experiment by Compartamos Banco;” by Manuela Angelucci, Dean Karlan and Jonathan Zinman; published by Innovations for Poverty Action; May 2013; 68 pages; available at: https://poverty-action.org/sites/default/files/ipa_winsomelosesome_release_0.pdf

This paper presents an analysis of whether microcredit products are counterproductive to promoting economic empowerment, especially when such products are offered at high interest rates. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: International Finance Corporation (IFC) Extends $10m Loan, $8m Trade-Finance Credit Line to Banco Financiera Centroamericana (Ficensa) of Honduras for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the US-based World Bank Group, recently announced that it will provide a USD 10 million senior loan and a USD 8 million trade-finance credit line to Banco Financiera Centroamericana (Ficensa), a Honduran financial institution, for on-lending to small and medium-sized businesses. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Creation Investments Social Ventures Fund II Completes Closing with $75m, Disburses Equity Investments in Grupo Finclusion of Mexico; Sonata, Grameen Koota of India

Creation Investments Social Ventures Fund II, a US-based private equity fund managed by Creation Investments Capital Management, has completed final closing with USD 75 million in committed capital. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: International Finance Corporation (IFC) Arranges $470m in Loans for Itau Unibanco of Brazil for Women Entrepreneurs, Funded by Bank of America, Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi, National Bank of Abu Dhabi, Development Bank of Japan

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the US-based World Bank Group, recently announced it will disburse a local-currency loan equivalent to USD 470 million to Itau Unibanco, a Brazilian bank, in an effort to increase the financial inclusion of women-owned enterprises in Brazil. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: University of Texas, El Centro para la Promoción de la Micro y Pequeña Empresa en Centroamérica (CENPROMYPE), US Department of State Launch Small Business Development Center in Honduras

The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) International Trade Center, a US-based trade assistance organization; El Centro para la Promoción de la Micro y Pequeña Empresa en Centroamérica (CENPROMYPE), a Central American institution focused on small-business development; and the US Department of State Pathways for Prosperity Initiative, a policy dialogue effort linking 12 Western Hemisphere countries, has launched a Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in the city of Choluteca, Honduras. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: IFC to Loan $50m to BanBif of Peru to Support Small, Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs)

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, recently announced that it would loan USD 50 million to Banco Interamericano de Finanzas (BanBif), a Peruvian commercial bank, in an effort to double the number of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) served by the bank by 2017. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Eastern Caribbean Central Bank Promotes Entrepreneurship Through 20-week Startup Design Course, Supports “Small Business Credit Guarantee Scheme”

The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB), the monetary authority of six Caribbean nations including Antigua and Barbuda, in partnership with the Antigua Barbuda Investment (ABI) Bank, a private bank founded in 1990, recently hosted a 20-week entrepreneurship course in the country of Antigua and Barbuda aimed at helping aspiring entrepreneurs to improve their presentation and business plan development skills. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Remittances to Latin America and the Caribbean, Savings Groups Leading to Advocacy, Microinsurance in the Philippines

“Remittances to Latin America and the Caribbean in 2012: Differing Behavior Across Subregions;” by Maria Luisa Hayem; published by the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF); 2013; 27 pages; available at http://www5.iadb.org/mif/HOME/Knowledge/tabid/426/idPublication/78709/language/en-US/Default.aspx

This report from the US-based Multilateral Investment Fund provides an analysis of remittances received across national borders by people in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Development Bank of Jamaica Commits $20m to Micro-, Small Businesses

The Jamaican Minister of Finance and Planning, the Hon. Dr. Peter Phillips, reportedly announced in the House of Representatives that the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ), a government-owned development bank, will commit JMD 2 billion (USD 20 million) to the micro- and small business sector during fiscal year (FY) 2013/2014, which ends on March 31, 2014. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Accion Venture Lab Invests in 5 Startups Aiming to Bring Financial Services to Poor People, Including Salud Facil of Mexico, Varthana of India

Accion, a US-based provider of microenterprise loans and business training in 31 countries, has announced that its Accion Venture Lab, which provides seed capital and management support to financial inclusion startups, will invest an aggregate of USD 10 million in startup companies that deliver financial services to poor people around the globe. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: IFC, Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), Atlantic Bank of Belize Extend Effort to Improve Access to Small, Medium-Sized Enterprises, Increase Portfolio to $35m by 2014

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, and Atlantic Bank, a Belizean bank majority-held by Sociedad Nacional de Inversiones, SA of Honduras, recently launched the second phase of a project with the aim of improving access to financial services for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Belize with support from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA). Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Absolute Portfolio Management Loans $13m from Dual Return Funds to Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) in South America, Eurasia Including FINCA Armenia

Absolute Portfolio Management (APM), an Austria-based firm that invests in microfinance and other sectors, recently notified MicroCapital that it loaned the equivalent of USD 13 million during April 2013 through two of the funds that it manages to microfinance institutions (MFIs) in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Ecuador, Honduras, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Peru, the Philippines, Russia and Tajikistan. Of this amount, USD 7.5 million was issued in local currency. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Cuba Leases 2,000 State Firms to Private Sector

According to Cuba’s Domestic Trade Ministry, a government body charged with implementing and monitoring domestic wholesale and retail commerce, 2,041 businesses have been leased to 5,479 former employees as part of Cuba’s economic reform plan to introduce non-state management in 47 economic activities. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: U’yo’olché, Fondo Mexicano para la Conservación de la Naturaleza (FMCN) Look to Carbon Credits to Finance Improved Cook Stoves to Reduce Emissions, Improve Living Standards, Promote Women’s Rights in Rural Mexico

U’yo’olché, a Mexican environmental non-governmental organization (NGO), and Fondo Mexicano para la Conservación de la Naturaleza, A.C. (FMCN), a nonprofit funder of environmental efforts, are leading an initiative to provide improved cook stoves to families in rural areas of southern Mexico with the aim of reducing wood consumption, eliminating hazardous household smoke, decreasing the risk of accidents, minimizing household expenses and promoting women’s empowerment. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: IFC to Advise La Nacional of the Dominican Republic on Strengthening Risk Management, Corporate Governance

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private-investment arm of the World Bank Group, has announced a cooperation agreement with Asociacion La Nacional de Ahorros y Préstamos (La Nacional), a financial institution in the Dominican Republic, to strengthen La Nacional’s risk management and corporate governance practices in an effort to improve its service to its low-income and small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) clients. Continue reading

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