Category: Trends/Challenges

MICROFINANCE EVENT: 3rd Sankalp Southeast Asia Summit; September 19 – 20, 2017; Jakarta, Indonesia

Event Name: Third Sankalp Southeast Asia Summit 2017: Local Problems, Global Solutions

Event Date: September 19 – September 20, 2017

Event Location: Hotel Bidakara; Jakarta, Indonesia

Summary of Event: The focus of the summit is to “strengthen Southeast Asia’s entrepreneurship ecosystem,” and the theme of this year’s iteration is “Local Problems, Global Solutions.” Discussions will address topics such as policy, health, energy, financial services and agriculture. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE EVENT: Small Enterprise Education and Promotion (SEEP) Network Annual Conference; October 2 – 4, 2017; Arlington, Virginia, USA

Event Name: The SEEP Network Annual Conference

Event Date: October 2 – 4, 2017

Event Location: Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel; Arlington, Virginia, USA

Summary of Event: The theme of this year’s conference is “Catalyzing Transformative Change.” Speakers will address strategies in the following tracks: (1) Resilience Continue reading

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Written by Comments Off on MICROFINANCE EVENT: Small Enterprise Education and Promotion (SEEP) Network Annual Conference; October 2 – 4, 2017; Arlington, Virginia, USA Posted in Events, Trends/Challenges

SPECIAL REPORT: Christoph Pausch of e-MFP on Housing Finance and the 2017 European Microfinance Award

MicroCapital:European Microfinance Platform Why was housing selected as the theme of this year’s European Microfinance Award?

Christoph Pausch: It’s really a question of staying true to the underlying purpose of the Award: to highlight practices that are outside the microfinance mainstream, but are financially sustainable and deliver significant Continue reading

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SPECIAL REPORT: 5 Days Left to Apply for 2017 European Microfinance Award on Housing

Until May 22, the European Microfinance PlatformEuropean Microfinance Platform (e-MFP) is accepting applications for the 2017 European Microfinance Award, which is focused this year on financing housing improvements for Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Sectoral Migration Among Microenterprises in Madagascar, Tanzania Postal Bank’s Popote Digital Financial Services, Insurance Regulation in the Philippines

“Financial Constraint, Entrepreneurship and Sectoral Migrations: Evidence from Madagascar,” by Pierrick Baraton and Florian Léon, published by Making Finance Work for Africa, July 2016, 50 pages, available at https://www.mfw4a.org/nc/knowledge-center/resources/documents/documents-details/file/financial-constraint-entrepreneurship-and-sectoral-migrations-evidence-from-madagascar.html

The authors of this paper analysed data from 3,017 micro- and small enterprises that were clients of a microfinance institution (MFI) in Madagascar between 2008 and 2014. Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE EVENT: Global Symposium on Microfinance: Revolutionizing Microfinance: Insight, Innovation, Inclusion; May 22 – 23, 2017; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Asian Banking School Training for Practitioners; May 24 – 26, 2017

Event Name: Global Symposium on Microfinance: Revolutionizing Microfinance: Insight, Innovation, Inclusion

Dates: May 22 – May 23, 2017

Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Summary of Event: This symposium will consist of discussions and presentations on scaling up through innovative channels, deploying digital credit, design thinking, using “big data,” and credit risk assessment and risk management [1]. Following the symposium, the Asian Banking School is offering a three-day training Continue reading

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SPECIAL REPORT: Application Period Open for $106k European Microfinance Award on Housing Until May 22

The European Microfinance PlatformEuropean Microfinance Platform (e-MFP) has begun accepting applications for the eighth iteration of its European Microfinance Award, which is focused this year on financing housing improvements for people with low incomes. The deadline to apply is May 22. The award, which includes a cash prize of EUR 100,000 (USD 106,000), will be presented at European Microfinance Week, which is being held Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Alternative Financing in Africa, Middle East; Interoperability of Digital Financial Systems; Financial Inclusion in Kerala, India

“The Africa and Middle East Alternative Finance Benchmarking Report”; by The Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) and Energy4Impact; published by CCAF; February 2017; 64 pages; available at https://www.scribd.com/document/338995486/CCAF-Africa-and-Middle-East-Alternative-Finance-Report-2017#download&from_embed/

This report focuses on assessing the types and prevalence of alternative financing in Africa and the Middle East. Continue reading

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SPECIAL REPORT: The Mergers & Acquisitions Market in Africa’s Alternative Finance Sector

Headlines in the M&A market in Africa in recent years seem to have been dominated by the to-ing and fro-ing of Anglo-South African giants such as Barclays Africa/ABSA and Old Mutual. However, financial institutions in the middle market perhaps have been more active. The M&A market in the alternative finance sector (non-bank or “specialty” lenders) has seen at least 30 transactions (excluding minority stakes) completed over the last five years, and activity levels have remained robust over the last 18 months notwithstanding the slow-down of the M&A market overall.

The alternative finance sector covers a range of credit institutions that are not part of the traditional banking sector, for example, micro (enterprise) finance, consumer finance, leasing or invoice discounting, vehicle lending, housing finance, student finance, fintech, and specialist banks. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Indonesian Government Seeks to Shift KUR Microlending to Agriculture, Fisheries, Manufacturing from Trading, Services

The Indonesian government recently announced it plans to grow the portion of its Kredit Usaha Rakyat (KUR) program that is used for agriculture, fishing and manufacturing from 22 percent of the program total to 40 percent. The remainder of KUR lending is for trading and services. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: AYo Offers Free Mobile Health, Life Insurance to MTN Phone Subscribers in Uganda: “Recharge with Care” & “Send with Care”

AYo, which is a joint venture between two South African firms, insurer MMI Holdings and the MTN (Mobile Telecommunications Network) Group, recently launched its first two products, both in Uganda: (1) Recharge with Care, which provides life and/or hospitalization insurance when an MTN phone subscriber buys airtime; and (2) Send with Care, which Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: EFSE Lends $2m to VisionFund’s SEF International for Micro-, Small Enterprises in Armenia

The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE), a Luxembourg-based microfinance investment vehicle, recently announced that it has loaned AMD 970 million (USD 2 million) to Armenia’s SEF International to support the microfinance institution’s (MFI’s) lending to micro- and small businesses. SEF, which offers Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: UN Digital Financial Services Toolkits; 7th IMF Financial Access Survey; IFC, The MasterCard Foundation Mobile Money Handbook

“How to Succeed in Your Digital Journey: a Series of Toolkits for Financial Service Providers”; Published by the United Nations Capital Development Fund’s MicroLead Program; October 2016; available upon request via: https://uncdf.wufoo.com/forms/q4pnwh31pqtp7r/

This first portion of a six-part digital toolkit, which is available in English and French, was designed to benefit microfinance institutions (MFIs) and other financial services providers that aim to offer digital financial services to unbanked populations residing in remote locations. Continue reading

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Asian University for Women Expanding on Partnerships with Grameen Bank of Bangladesh, BRAC Afghanistan

Asian University for Women (AUW), which was created in 2008 in Chittagong, Bangladesh, is in the process of bringing on additional partners through which it will recruit bachelor’s degree candidates from low-income regions of Asia and the Middle East. The mission of AUW is to offer talented young women from families with minimal educational and financial resources the opportunity to earn an undergraduate Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE EVENT: Savings and Credit Forum; March 16, 2017; Zürich, Switzerland

Event Name: Savings and Credit Forum: What are the Social Performance Management and Reporting Practices of Financial Institutions and Microfinance Impact Investors?

Event Date: March 16, 2017

Event Location: University of Zürich, Rämistrasse 59, Zürich, Switzerland

Summary of Event: The draft agenda for this event includes topics such as standards for social performance management and the social performance reporting practices of several microfinance institutions. This half-day event Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE EVENT: Social Performance Task Force (SPTF) Social Investor Working Group Meeting; March 15-16, 2017; Zurich, Switzerland

Event Name: SPTF Social Investor Working Group Meeting

Event Date: March 15 – March 16, 2017

Event Location: University of Zurich, Rämistrasse 71, 8006 Zürich, Switzerland

Summary of Event: Participants in this meeting will discuss the challenges of social performance management (SPM) as it relates to investing in inclusive finance. Speakers also will share Continue reading

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SPECIAL REPORT: Recommendations from the Mekong Financial Inclusion Forum

AtBanking With the Poor Network the 2016 Mekong Financial Inclusion Forum, Ms. Claire Van der Vaeren, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, Cambodia, said that financial inclusion is a vital enabler that can help unlock the potential of the poor and underserved, enhance women’s economic empowerment and catalyse a range of national development objectives. Its importance is shown in references to six of the seventeen UN sustainable development goals.

Ms. Van der Vaeren also was impressed by level of private and public engagement in Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE EVENT: Impact Investing: Mainstreaming Purpose-Driven Finance; February 15, 2017; New York, USA

Event Name: Impact Investing: Mainstreaming Purpose-Driven Finance

Event Date: February 15, 2017

Event Location: Time Warner Center, 60 Columbus Circle, New York, New York, USA

Summary of Event: Speakers here will analyze opportunities and obstacles present in the “mainstreaming” of impact investing, which the organizers define as Continue reading

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