MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: FMO, ABN Amro, Privium Open FMO Privium Impact Fund to Invest in Job Creation, Environmental Efforts in Emerging Markets

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

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation Loans $2.2m to Kreditimi Rural I Kosoves of Kosovo, $500k to First MicroCredit Company of Kyrgyz Republic

The Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF), a Luxembourg-based provider of financial services to microfinance institutions, recently informed MicroCapital that it has loaned Continue reading

Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Credit Agricole Microfinance Foundation Loans $2.2m to Kreditimi Rural I Kosoves of Kosovo, $500k to First MicroCredit Company of Kyrgyz Republic Posted in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Developpement international Desjardins (DiD) Supports Lenders of Centre de Traitement Informatise du Senegal in Reaching Clients via SMS Messaging

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

Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Developpement international Desjardins (DiD) Supports Lenders of Centre de Traitement Informatise du Senegal in Reaching Clients via SMS Messaging Posted in Africa, Mobile Money, Trends/Challenges

MICROFINANCE EVENT: The MasterCard Foundation Symposium on Financial Inclusion, Award of $150k “Clients At The Centre” Prize, October 20-21, 2016, Kigali, Rwanda

Event Name: The MasterCard Foundation Symposium on Financial Inclusion

Event Dates: October 20-21, 2016

Event Location: Kigali, Rwanda Continue reading

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MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Flexible Microloan Repayment Schedules in Bangladesh; Merchant Acceptance of Digital Payments in Developing Countries; Global Standard-setting Bodies and Financial Inclusion

“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

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Bandhan Sells $474m in Microloans to HDFC Bank, IDBI Bank, Yes Bank

Bandhan Bank, an Indian microfinance institution that is organized as a commercial bank, recently sold INR 32 billion (USD 474 million) of “priority sector loans to more experienced private sector rivals to help them meet lending targets.” Indian regulators require banks to invest certain percentages of their holdings in “priority sectors” such as agriculture. Chandra Shekhar, the Managing Director of Bandhan Bank, said that Bandhan Bank had used “inter-bank participation certificates” to sell the loans to India’s HDFC Bank, IDBI Bank and Yes Bank. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: EBRD Loans $5.7m to United Bulgarian Bank for Residential Energy Efficiency

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a UK-based multilateral institution, recently loaned USD 5.7 million to the United Bulgarian Bank (UBB), a unit of the National Bank of Greece, for investments to improve the energy efficiency of residential buildings in Bulgaria. The loan is provided as part of EBRD’s Residential Energy Efficiency Credit Line (REECL), a facility serving Bulgaria that was “established by the EBRD in 2005 and extended twice due to strong market demand.” Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: DiD Supports Microfinance Institution Kafo Jiginew in Offering “Input Savings” Voucher Plan to Help Farmers in Mali Buy Improved Pesticides

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

Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: DiD Supports Microfinance Institution Kafo Jiginew in Offering “Input Savings” Voucher Plan to Help Farmers in Mali Buy Improved Pesticides Posted in Africa, Key Players, Trends/Challenges

MICROFINANCE EVENT: Participation for Harmonious Development Workshop, July 15-16, 2016, Fortune Institute of International Business, Delhi, India

Event Name: Participation for Harmonious Development: 1st Annual International Microfinance Research Workshop 2016

Event Dates: July 15-16, 2016

Event Location: Fortune Institute of International Business, Delhi, India

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MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Cambodian Microbank Sathapana Borrows $35m Syndicated by Taiwan’s First Commercial Bank

Sathapana Bank, a Cambodia-based commercial bank that evolved from a microfinance institution (MFI), recently borrowed USD 35 million from seven Taiwanese lenders through Taiwan’s First Commercial Bank for the purpose of “expanding its existing microfinance operations and broadening its commercial lending portfolio.” Sathapana management hopes that this loan indicates that Asian lenders are more willing to provide loans to MFIs. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: “Orange Money” Connects France, Ivory Coast, Mali, Senegal with Mobile Money Transfer

Orange, a France-based telecommunications company, recently expanded “Orange Money”, a mobile money service already used in 14 African countries by approximately 18 million people, to France, allowing customers to transfer money electronically to Ivory Coast, Mali and Senegal. Fees for using Orange Money are EUR 3 for transactions of EUR 100 or less, EUR 5 for transactions of EUR 100.01 to 250 and EUR 8 for transactions of EUR 250.01 to 400 (USD 3.4 for transactions of USD 113.34 or less, USD 5.67 for transactions of USD 113.35 to 283.31 and USD 9.07 for transactions of USD 283.32 to 453.36). The maximum amount per transaction is EUR 400 (USD 453.36). Orange Money has 41 points of sale in France and about 30,000 points of sale in Ivory Coast, Mali and Senegal. Continue reading

Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: “Orange Money” Connects France, Ivory Coast, Mali, Senegal with Mobile Money Transfer Posted in Africa

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Zambia Passes Secured Transactions Law to Boost Lending to SMEs Based on Movable Collateral

With support from the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the US-based World Bank Group, Zambia recently passed the “Personal Property Security Interest Act”, a law that aims to allow small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to use movable collateral such as equipment, machinery and inventory to access loans. Supporters of the law hope it will “generate USD 2 billion in financing to firms and benefit 6,500 SMEs, 1,200 micro enterprises and 1,200 women entrepreneurs” by 2020. Continue reading

Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Zambia Passes Secured Transactions Law to Boost Lending to SMEs Based on Movable Collateral Posted in Africa

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: EBRD Syndicates $21m Loan for Belarusky Narodny Bank for MSMEs in Belarus

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, a UK-based multilateral institution, recently announced its intent to arrange a “senior unsecured syndicated A/B loan” of USD 21 million to be lent to micro-, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) via Belarus’s Belarusky Narodny Bank. The loan is divided into a senior tranche of USD 5 million funded by EBRD and a junior tranche of USD 16 million, which will be “syndicated to financial institutions” other than EBRD. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Ericsson Plans Emergency Electronic Wallet System for Disaster Relief

Ericsson, a Sweden-based telecommunications company, recently announced plans to develop an emergency wallet system intended to “enable the distribution and use of digital funds by relief workers and impacted populations, which can help address issues such as safety, expense, and traceability that are associated with handling cash.” This emergency wallet system is part of Ericsson’s “Technology for Good Initiative.” Continue reading

Written by Comments Off on MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Ericsson Plans Emergency Electronic Wallet System for Disaster Relief Posted in Mobile Money

SPECIAL REPORT: 7th European Microfinance Award: $112k for Education Funding

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

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: India’s SKS Microfinance Changes Name to Bharat Financial Inclusion, in Apparent Continuing Reaction to 2010 Microfinance Crisis in Andhra Pradesh

SKS Microfinance, a for-profit microfinance institution (MFI) headquartered in Hyderabad, India, recently announced it will change its name to Bharat Financial Inclusion [1]. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: EIB Pledges Venture Capital to Microfinance Institutions, Microfinance Investment Vehicles Operating in the Southern Mediterranean

The European Investment Bank (EIB), the long-term lending institution of the European Union (EU), recently pledged to create a venture capital scheme to support microfinance institutions and microfinance investment vehicles operating in the Middle East and North Africa within the next four months. Continue reading