MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) Launches $807m Long-Term Rural Credit Fund

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), a development bank in India that formulates certain credit and banking policies, recently announced the launch of the long-term rural credit fund, which will provide INR 5,000 crores (USD 807 million) for refinancing agricultural loans disbursed by cooperative banks and regional rural banks (RRBs). Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Oxus Raises $4.2m in Equity from Investors including Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development (ACTED) for Expansion in Asia, Africa

The Oxus Group, a French microfinance organization with subsidiaries in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and three Asian countries, recently raised EUR 3.3 million (USD 4.2 million) in equity through its unit Oxus Holding by selling equity shares to the Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development (ACTED), which remains its majority shareholder, and three unnamed retail investors. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) Loans $19m to Komercijalna banka Beograd of Serbia for Housing Purchases, Improvements

Serbia’s Komercijalna banka Beograd, a bank based in Serbia, recently borrowed EUR 15 million (USD 19.2 million) under a senior loan agreement from the European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE), a Luxembourg-based, government-backed microfinance investment vehicle. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Bank for Reconstruction (EBRD) Announces Potential $25m Risk-sharing Endeavor with Société Générale Serbia for Rural Microenterprise Financing Via VisionFund’s AgroInvest

The European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a multilateral institution headquartered in London, England, recently announced that it is likely to participate in a risk-sharing endeavor totaling RSD 2.3 billion (USD 25 million) with Société Générale Serbia, a subsidiary of the France-based financial institution Société Générale. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: United Nations Global Compact, Gate Global Impact Launch Gateway 2.0 to Fund Socially Responsible Projects

The United Nations (UN) Global Compact, an initiative to encourage businesses to adopt sustainable and socially responsible policies, and Gate Global Impact (GGI), a US-based regulatory-compliant electronic marketplace that focuses on impact investing, have launched Gateway 2.0, a website enabling small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) listed on the UN Global Compact Social Enterprise Hub to access financing for sustainable and “socially responsible” projects [1]. Continue reading

SPECIAL REPORT: Narda Sotomayor on Regulating Microfinance via Proportionality, Financial Education and Mobile Money in Peru

MicroCapital: Can you tell us a bit about your talk planned for European Microfinance Week on “balancing financial inclusion with market stability”?

Narda Sotomayor: A key element to achieve this balance is the principle of proportionality, under which regulations vary based on the risks associated with the product or service in question. For instance, for microloans for businesses with overall debt below PEN 20,000 (USD 7,000), the required documentation is minimal, and loan provision requirements are based only on the number of days any loans are overdue. The lender has the freedom to establish prices to cover its costs, such that institutional sustainability is guaranteed. It was determined that anti-money-laundering rules were making it too costly to open deposit accounts for the poor, mainly because of the heavy burden of “know-your-customer” documentation. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: SolarNow Raises $2.5m from Novastar Ventures, Acumen Fund

SolarNow, an Ugandan-based company selling solar electric home systems, recently raised EUR 2 million (USD 2.53 million) by selling equity shares to Novastar Ventures, a Mauritius-based fund investing in new businesses with ‘innovative’ business models in Africa, and Acumen Fund, a New-York based nonprofit venture fund. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: African Development Bank (AfDB), Asian Development Bank (ADB), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), European Investment Bank (EIB), Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), World Bank Group (WBG) Issues Joint Statement on Climate Finance

A group of multilateral development finance institutions, the African Development Bank (AfDB), the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Investment Bank (EIB), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the World Bank Group (WBG), recently issued a joint statement on climate finance. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Loans $3m to Muganbank of Azerbaijan for On-Lending to Corporates, Individuals for Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy Projects

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a multilateral institution headquartered in London, is loaning USD 3 million to Muganbank, a financial institution that offers retail and corporate banking services in Azerbaijan. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: International Financial Organization (IFC) Syndicates Loans Totaling $60m to BBVA Paraguay to Fund Small, Medium-sized Enterprises

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group that offers financial services to businesses and governments in developing countries with the aim of increasing economic growth, has announced that it will loan a total of USD 60 million to Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria Paraguay (BBVA Paraguay), a subsidiary of the Spanish financial services group BBVA. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: International Finance Corporation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to Provide $3.9m in Advisory Services to Airtel Uganda to Expand Mobile Money

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the US-based World Bank Group that aims to improve the living standards of people in developing countries, recently announced that it will partner with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, a US-based nonprofit that supports innovations in health and education, to provide advisory services valued at USD 3.9 million to Airtel Uganda, a subsidiary of Indian telecommunications company Bharti Airtel. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Grameen Crédit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF) to Loan $1.1m to FINCA Malawi, $580k to Réseau de Micro-institutions de Croissance de Revenus of Mali

The Grameen Crédit Agricole Microfinance Foundation (GCAMF), a Luxembourg-based foundation providing financial services to microfinance institutions (MFIs) and other social businesses, recently informed to MicroCapital that it disbursed a three-year loan in local currency equivalent in value to EUR 882,000 (USD 1.1 million) to Foundation for International Community Assistance (FINCA) Malawi, a microfinance institution (MFI) member of the US-based, nonprofit FINCA International microfinance network. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Investment Fund Loans $2.53m to Vitas via European Progress Microfinance to Support Microenterprises in Romania

The European Investment Fund, a member of the European Investment Bank Group providing financing to small and medium-sized enterprises, recently loaned EUR 2 million (USD 2.53 million) to Vitas, a Romanian microfinance institution, through European Progress Microfinance, a microfinance investment vehicle supported by the EU’s European Commission and the European Investment Bank. Continue reading

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Center for Financial Inclusion (CFI), HelpAge USA Launch Research Initiative on Financial Inclusion of Older Adults in Colombia

The Center for Financial Inclusion (CFI), an affiliate of US-based nonprofit Accion, and HelpAge USA, an affiliate of UK-based NGO network HelpAge International, have launched a research initiative on the financial inclusion of older adults in developing countries. Continue reading