The sale of microfinance institutions (MFIs) in Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania and Uganda over the first half of 2016 by US-based NGO Opportunity International to Luxembourg-based financial technology company MyBucks has raised concerns both that these MFIs’ clients could be negatively impacted and that these transactions signal that the sector’s overall direction has shifted toward profit-making. Continue reading
Marina Kortenbusch, who serves as the Head of the European Microfinance Platform (e-MFP’s) Rural Outreach and Innovation (ROI) Action Group, is the Managing Partner of Switzerland’s Business and Finance Consulting. Josien Sluijs is an e-MFP board member and Director of the Netherlands’ Platform for Inclusive Finance, which is also a member of the ROI Action Group.
MicroCapital: Why is it important to serve rural markets?
Marina Kortenbusch: In most emerging economies, the rural sector employs a large share of the working population. Developing rural markets is an effective way to boost prosperity by increasing the incomes of individuals whilst also contributing to food security, reducing environmental impact and increasing exports.
MC: What are some key differences between rural and urban markets? Continue reading
CGAP (Consultative Group to Assist the Poor), a US-based, nonprofit policy and research center that aims to facilitate the expansion of financial access, is seeking Continue reading
The Ministry of Economy of Gabon recently froze the activities of 50 microfinance institutions that lacked approval to offer microfinance services. Continue reading
Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB), a Kenya-based publicly-traded financial services company, and GoSwiff, a Singapore-based payment facilitation firm, recently rolled out a mobile payment solution for merchants in Rwanda. Continue reading
Three Dutch institutions, development bank Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO), Algemene Bank Nederland (ABN) Amro, and fund manager Privium, recently announced the opening of the FMO Privium Impact Fund. Continue reading
Développement international Desjardins (DiD), a unit of Canada’s cooperative Desjardins Group that promotes financial services in developing countries, launched a pilot program Continue reading
“Cost-Benefit Analysis of Traditional Versus Flexible Microfinance in Bangladesh;” by S. Bairagi, W. Bin Shadat; published by the Copenhagen Consensus Center; May 2016; 32 pages; available at: http://www.copenhagenconsensus.com/sites/default/files/bin_shadat_microfinance.pdf Continue reading
Developpement international Desjardins (DiD), a nonprofit unit of Canada’s cooperative Desjardins Group that promotes financial services in developing countries, recently partnered with Kafo Jiginew, a microfinance institution in Mali, to help it introduce a savings plan intended to address the fact that small-scale farmers often run out of funds between harvest and planting time. Continue reading
Christoph Pausch serves as Executive Secretary of the European Microfinance Platform (e-MFP). The European Microfinance Award is jointly organised by the Luxembourg Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, e-MFP and the Inclusive Finance Network Luxembourg. For more details, please visit http://www.european-microfinance-award.com.
MicroCapital: Why is education access the topic of this year’s Award?
Christoph Pausch: Education is the strongest predictor of economic
well-being, and it can also have a major impact on health, women’s empowerment and even population growth. Unfortunately, Continue reading
SKS Microfinance, a for-profit microfinance institution (MFI) headquartered in Hyderabad, India, recently announced it will change its name to Bharat Financial Inclusion . Continue reading
Uber, a US-based car hailing service, and Sidian Bank, a Kenya-based commercial bank, recently announced they will support Uber drivers in the purchase or lease of new vehicles. Continue reading
“Guidance on the Application of the Core Principles for Effective Banking Supervision to the Regulation and Supervision of Institutions Relevant to Financial Inclusion”, published by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, December 2015, 55 pages, available at http://www.bis.org/bcbs/publ/d351.pdf Continue reading
IFMR Capital, an affiliate of the Chennai-based nonprofit Institute of Financial Management and Research (IFMR), recently structured the first capital market transaction for the Micro Units Development & Refinance Agency (MUDRA) Bank, an Indian public-sector financial institution that provides subsidized loans and other services to microfinance institutions (MFIs) and non-banking financial institutions (NBFCs). Continue reading
The World Bank, member of US-based multilateral World Bank Group, and the Rabobank Foundation, the “social fund” of the Dutch bank Rabobank, recently teamed up to consolidate agricultural cooperative financial institutions (CFIs), organizations set up by farmers to gain access to financing. Continue reading
“A Change in Behavior: Innovations in Financial Capability;” by J. Arnold, E. Rhyne; published by the Center for Financial Inclusion at Accion, JPMorgan Chase & Co; April 2016; 47 pages; available at: https://centerforfinancialinclusionblog.files.wordpress.com/2016/04/a-change-in-behavior-final.pdf Continue reading
Ujjivan Financial Services, an Indian provider of microloans and life insurance, recently conducted its initial public offering (IPO), generating INR 3.6 billion (USD 54 million) from the sale of newly issued shares. Continue reading
Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the overseas development agency of the French government, recently provided TNR 22.8 million (USD 12 million) in debt funding to Enda Tamweel, the agricultural and livestock microfinance division of Tunisia-based microfinance organization Enda Inter-Arabe. Continue reading