MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Guatemala’s Fundación Génesis Empresarial, Pakistan’s Kashf Foundation, Opportunity Bank of Uganda Named as Finalists for Education Edition of $112k European Microfinance Award

The European Microfinance Platform (e-MFP), a network of European microfinance stakeholders working in developing countries, recently announced that three finalists for the 7th European Microfinance Award have been selected from 30 applicants: (1) Fundación Génesis Empresarial of Guatemala; (2) Kashf Foundation of Pakistan; and (3) Opportunity Bank of Uganda. This year’s award, themed “Microfinance and Access to Education,” will be presented on November 17 during European Microfinance Week, along with its cash prize of EUR 100,000 (USD 112,000).

Fundación Génesis Empresarial offers loans for university and post-secondary vocational studies to students from low-income families in Guatemala along with career support services such as financial education, job fairs and mentoring. Génesis reports 685 students served since 2014. As of 2015, Génesis reported to the US-based nonprofit data provider Microfinance Information Exchange (MIX) total assets of USD 87.9 million and a gross loan portfolio of USD 82.6 million with approximately 89,400 borrowers.

Kashf Foundation extends loans to “low-cost” private schools in Pakistan in addition to providing training for teachers and management classes for school owners in an attempt to bolster schools’ infrastructure and financial operations. Since 2014, Kashf has worked with 850 schools, whose student populations total approximately 150,000. As of June 30, 2015, Kashf reports total assets of PKR 7.01 billion (USD 66.9 million) and a loan portfolio of PKR 4.36 billion (USD 41.6 million). As of 2014, Kashf reports to MIX that it has 247,000 active borrowers.

Opportunity Bank of Uganda (OBU) extends loans to low-income parents to cover their children’s tuition costs and provides credit to “low-cost” private schools along with “professional development and a school support network to facilitate exchanges for school owners.” OBU reports 315,000 students served since 2012. As of 2015, MIX indicates OBU had total assets of USD 20.5 million and a gross loan portfolio of USD 12.1 million outstanding to approximately 28,600 borrowers. As of the same date, it reports total deposits of USD 7.59 million and approximately 155,000 depositors.

The annual European Microfinance Award is jointly organized by the Luxembourg Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs – Directorate for Development Cooperation, e-MFP and the Inclusive Finance Network Luxembourg, with the support of the European Investment Bank.

By Michelle Dold, Research Associate

This announcement is part of a sponsored series on European Microfinance Week, which will be held by e-MFP from November 16 through November 18, 2016. MicroCapital will be reporting on-site from the event.

About Fundación Génesis Empresarial

Fundación Génesis Empresarial is a Guatemalan nonprofit microfinance institution that provides financial and advisory services to individuals and micro- and small enterprises. As of 2015, Génesis reported to the US-based nonprofit data provider Microfinance Information Exchange (MIX) total assets of USD 87.9 million and a gross loan portfolio of USD 82.6 million with approximately 89,400 borrowers. Génesis reports 685 students served through its higher education credit and career mentoring program from 2014 through 2016.

About Kashf Foundation

Kashf Foundation is a Pakistani microfinance institution (MFI) founded in 1996 that focuses on providing financial and insurance services along with financial education to low-cost schools and low-income populations, especially women. As of June 30, 2015, Kashf reports total assets of PKR 7.01 billion (USD 66.9 million) and a microloan portfolio of PKR 4.36 billion (USD 41.6 million). As of 2014, Kashf reports to the US-based nonprofit data provider Microfinance Information Exchange (MIX) that it has 247,000 active borrowers. From 2014 through 2016, Kashf has worked with 850 schools, whose student populations total approximately 150,000.

About Opportunity Bank Uganda

Opportunity Bank Uganda (OBU) is a microfinance institution (MFI) and member of Opportunity Transformational Inc., a microfinance investment vehicle created by US-based Opportunity International and managed by the US-based Calvert Social Investment Foundation. OBU provides microloans, savings and insurance products to low-income Ugandans from its 20 branches. As of 2015, OBU reports to the US-based nonprofit data provider Microfinance Information Exchange (MIX) total assets of USD 20.53 million and a gross loan portfolio of USD 12.1 million with approximately 28,600 borrowers. As of the same date, it reports total deposits of USD 7.59 million and approximately 155,000 depositors. Opportunity Bank reports 315,000 students served through its educational loan and school development program from 2012 through 2016.

About European Microfinance Platform

Founded in 2006, the European Microfinance Platform (e-MFP) is a network of 124 microfinance organizations and individuals that aims to promote information exchange and other forms of cooperation among European microfinance actors working in developing countries. E-MFP members include financial institutions, government agencies, NGOs, consultancies, researchers and universities.

The annual European Microfinance Award, which recognizes “innovative thinking in the microfinance sector” is jointly organised by the Luxembourg Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs – Directorate for Development Cooperation, e-MFP and the Inclusive Finance Network Luxembourg, with the support of the European Investment Bank.

Sources and Additional Information:

For additional coverage of European Microfinance Week, please see: https://www.microcapital.org/category/european-microfinance-week/

[1] E-MFP Press Release: Fundación Génesis Empresarial, Kashf Foundation, and Opportunity Bank of Uganda announced as Finalists for 7th European Microfinance Award on Access to Education

[2] European Microfinance Week 2016 Website

[3] MicroCapital Universe Profile: Fundación Génesis Empresarial

[4] MicroCapital Universe Profile: Kashf Foundation

[5] MicroCapital Universe Profile: Opportunity Bank Uganda

[6] MicroCapital Universe Profile: European Microfinance Platform

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