Category: South Asia, East Asia and Pacific

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

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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 give all Indians access to banking services, including credit, savings, insurance, direct benefits transfer and electronic payments. Continue reading

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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), an MFI that was established in Tbilisi, Georgia, in 1998 as the Crystal Fund. Continue reading

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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

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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 the shareholding via a combination of purchasing shares from existing shareholders and subscribing to new equity shares of Asirvad. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance 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 MFIs in 36 countries. 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 in local currency equivalent to: (1) EUR 482,000 (USD 555,000) over a two-year period 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 Encot, a provider of microloans to rural enterprises in Uganda [1].  Continue reading

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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

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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

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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: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development Loans $114m to Finansbank for Women Entrepreneurs in Turkey, Bank CenterCredit (BCC) for Micro-, Small, Medium-Sized Enterprises in Kazakhstan

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a multilateral financial institution headquartered in England, recently extended loans to Finansbank, a commercial bank in Turkey that is a subsidiary of the National Bank of Greece Group, and Bank CenterCredit (BCC), a Kazakhstan-based joint stock company. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Financial Liberalization and Rural Banking in India, Agricultural Financing and Food Security in Developing Countries, European Small Business Finance Outlook

“Financial Liberalization and Rural Banking in India;” published by the Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata; 2014; 29 pages; available at http://www.networkideas.org/feathm/dec2004/Conference_Papers/Financial_Liberalisation_Rural_Banking_India_VKR.pdf

This paper examines the effects of the recent trend of financial liberalization in India, including its impact on banking policy and the structure of rural economies in the country. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO) Syndicates $70m in Loans to BRAC for Small, Medium-Sized Enterprises with Participation from OFID, OeEB, BIO, Actiam, responsAbility

Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO), a Dutch public-private partnership that aims to promote growth in developing economies, recently disbursed a USD 70 million five-year syndicated loan to BRAC, an NGO that was formerly known as the Bangladesh Rehabilitation Assistance Committee and serves eleven countries as of 2015. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Microcredit Regulatory Authority (MRA) of Bangladesh Launches Lead Microfinance Institution System to Coordinate Poverty-reduction Programmes

The Microcredit Regulatory Authority (MRA), a Bangladeshi government body that oversees the operations of nongovernmental organization (NGO) microfinance institutions (MFIs), reportedly is planning the launch of a Lead Microfinance Institution System to coordinate government-funded poverty reduction programmes at the ground level. [1] The model replicates the Lead Bank System present in the country, where a lead bank oversees the arrangement of loan syndications. One goal of this new system is to reduce possible overlaps among international and domestic poverty-reduction programmes that are active in the country. MRA Director Sazzad Hossain also offered the following example of what a lead MFI would do: “Suppose, 200 people are eligible for credits in an upazila, but under the existing system 150 people are getting the credit facilities. The lead MFI will find out why the rest are not under MFI credit programme.” Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: JD.com Crowdfunding to Expand Grameen China’s Microfinance Services

JD.com Incorporated, a direct sales e-commerce company in China with annual sales totalling RMB 29 billion (USD 11 billion) [1], recently entered into a collaboration with Grameen China, which operates under Grameen Trust, the nonprofit arm of Bangladesh’s Grameen Bank. [2] Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Asian Development Bank Loans $200m to Yes Bank of India to Fund Women’s Self-Help Groups, Small-Scale Farmers

The Asian Development Bank (ADB), a multilateral development finance institution based in the Philippines, has recently approved a loan of up to USD 200 million to Yes Bank Limited, an Indian commercial bank based in Mumbai. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Mobile Services Firm Digicel Invests $5m in Bima to Promote Microinsurance in Asia-Pacific, Caribbean, Central America

Digicel, a Bermuda-based cellular network provider that operates in 30 markets in the Caribbean, Central America and the Pacific, recently invested USD 5 million in Bima, a Sweden-based mobile microinsurance provider that operates in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Central America and the Pacific, to expand microinsurance product offerings in the Caribbean and the Asia-Pacific region. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: WestBridge Capital Invests $16m to Acquire 20% Equity Stake in India’s Aptus Value Housing Finance

WestBridge Capital, an investment company with offices in India, Mauritius and the United States, recently invested a total of INR 98 crore (USD 16 million) to acquire 20 percent of the shares of Aptus Value Housing Finance, an India-based company that seeks to provide affordable housing finance, primarily for middle-income, self-employed customers [1]. Continue reading

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