MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Pakistan’s Apna Obtains Nationwide Microfinance Banking License

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), the country’s central bank, recently issued a nationwide microfinance banking license to Apna Microfinance Bank (Apna MFB) thereby enhancing its status from that of a district-based bank. This license permits Apna MFB to expand its operations outside the city of Karachi, Pakistan, where it operates five branches. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Mutual Funds in India Invest $157m in Secured Debentures of Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) Equitas, Janalakshmi, SKS, Ujjivan

Several mutual funds based in India, including Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI) Prudential Mutual Fund, Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC) Mutual Fund, Kotak Mutual Fund, Reliance Mutual Fund and State Bank of India (SBI) Mutual Fund, recently invested in secured debentures issued by several Indian microfinance institutions (MFIs). Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Donating up to $6m to World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) for Housing Development in Haiti

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the foreign assistance agency of the US government, recently agreed to give the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU), a US-based association of credit union groups in 54 countries, a donation up to USD 6 million under USAID’S “Home Ownership and Mortgage Expansion” (HOME) facility. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation Loans $1.5m to Première Agence de Microfinance – Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire

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 loans: (1) The equivalent of approximately USD 676,000 in local currency over three years to Première Agence de Microfinance au Burkina Faso (PAMF – BF), a microfinance institution (MFI) in Burkina Faso; and (2) the equivalent of approximately USD 845,000 in local currency over three years to Première Agence de Microfinance Côte d’Ivoire (PAMF – CI), an MFI in Ivory Coast [1]. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Microfinance Investor BlueOrchard of Switzerland Appoints Dr Patrick Schuerle as CEO

BlueOrchard Finance (BlueOrchard), a Switzerland-based commercial manager of microfinance investments, recently announced the appointment of Dr Patrick Schuerle as the organization’s new Chief Executive Officer as of January 1, 2016. Dr Schuerle will succeed Mr Peter Fanconi, who will serve as the Chairman of the Board from that time. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: International Finance Corporation (IFC) Provides 50% Credit Guarantee to $13m Bond Issuance of Mexican Microfinance Institution (MFI) Consorcio de Asistencia al Microemprendedor (CAMESA)

Consorcio de Asistencia al Microemprendedor (CAMESA), a Mexico-based, deposit-taking microfinance institution (MFI), recently raised MXN 200 million (USD 13 million) through its first bond issuance to support the expansion of its lending services. Continue reading

MICROFINANCE EVENT: Fondazione Giordano Dell’Amore to Host Conference, “Improving Financial Inclusion of Smallholder Farmers”, Milan, Italy, October 15-16, 2015; Results of $54k Microfinance Best Practices International Award to be Declared

Event Name: Improving Financial Inclusion of Smallholder Farmers

Event Date: October 15-16, 2015

Event Location: Via Romagnosi 8, 20121 Milan, Italy

Cost: Free, registration required

Summary of Event: The conference aims to discuss various issues related to microfinance and improving financial inclusion of smallholder farmers, through three plenary sessions and nine workshops. The winner of the EUR 50,000 (approximately USD 54,000) Giordano Dell’Amore Microfinance Best Practices International Award 2015 will be announced at the conference. The primary language of the conference will be English. Registration is compulsory. Continue reading

MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Mobile Finance Implementation; Alternative Delivery Channels and Technology; “Market Insights for Innovations and Design” (MI4ID) Behavioral Research

“Expanding Access to Finance Through Mobile Payments;” published by the Foundation for International Community Assistance (FINCA) International and The MasterCard Foundation; June 2015; 12 pages; available at http://www.finca.org/files/2015/06/FINCA-MasterCard-Case-study-2015.pdf

This case study offers suggestions for microfinance institutions (MFIs) implementing mobile technology. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Tanzania’s Yetu Microfinance to Launch Initial Public Offering of $5.36m

Yetu Microfinance (Yetu), an unlicensed microfinance institution (MFI) in Tanzania, recently announced that it will launch an initial public offering (IPO) with the aim of raising TZS 12.5 billion (approximately USD 5.63 million) for expansion and to comply with the country’s regulatory minimum core capital of TZS 5 billion (approximately USD 2.25 million) for licensed MFIs. Continue reading

SPECIAL REPORT: “More Inclusive Finance for Youth: Scalable and Sustainable Delivery Models for Financial and Non-Financial Services” from e-MFP’s Youth Financial Inclusion Action Group

MicroCapital: What is the motivation for the new study “More Inclusive Finance for Youth: Scalable and Sustainable Delivery Models for Financial and Non-Financial Services,” which was published recently by e-MFP’s Youth Financial Inclusion Action Group?

Severine Deboos: Almost 73 million youth worldwide are looking for work. The UN’s International Labour Office (ILO) considers financial inclusion an important ingredient to fostering youth employment. While young people may need access to services such as savings, credit, insurance and payments, potential employers may need loans to fund apprenticeships. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation Invests $2.4m in Cambodian Microfinance Institutions Chamroeun, Thaneakea Phum Cambodia (TPC)

The Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF), a Luxembourg-based provider of financial services to microfinance institutions (MFIs) and other social businesses, recently issued the following two loans to Cambodian MFIs: Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: 179 NGO Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) Receive Conditional License To Operate in Bangladesh

A group of 179 non-governmental microfinance institutions (MFIs) recently received conditional licenses to operate in Bangladesh for three years. The licenses were granted by the country’s Microcredit Regulatory Authority (MRA), a government agency that supervises the transparency and accountability of MFIs in the country. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation Loans $424k to Sri Lanka’s Janamithu Lanka Limited, $841k to Tajikistan’s Humo and Partners

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) The equivalent of EUR 462,000 (approximately USD 424,000) in local currency over three years to Janamithu Lanka Limited (JLL), a microfinance institution (MFI) in Sri Lanka that offers loans to poor people for education and asset building; and (2) EUR 850,000 (approximately USD 841,000) over one year to Humo and Partners, a Tajikistan-based MFI founded by the local affiliate of Switzerland-based nongovernmental organization CARE International. The MFI lends mainly to farmers and other rural entrepreneurs [1]. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Considers $22m Credit to Belinvestbank of Belarus for On-Lending to Micro-, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs)

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a multilateral investment institution headquartered in London, is considering extending a credit line of EUR 20 million (USD 22 million) to Belinvestbank (BIB), a state-owned bank in Belarus. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Symbiotics Sells Bonds Worth $11m for South Africa’s SA Taxi

Symbiotics, a Switzerland-based investment company that focuses on emerging markets, recently announced that it has completed the second tranche of a bond transaction worth USD 11 million to benefit SA Taxi Development Finance (SA Taxi), a South African leasing company that finances “minibus taxi” operators in the country. Continue reading