MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Incofin’s Rural Impulse Fund Loans $1.5m to Microfinance Institution Humo and Partners of Tajikistan

Incofin Investment Management (Incofin IM), a Belgium-based company that manages funds investing in microfinance institutions (MFIs), recently loaned USD 1.5 million over 12 months via the Rural Impulse Fund II to Humo and Partners, a microfinance institution (MFI) based in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Three Social Security Insurance, Pension Schemes Launched in India; Banks May Bear Subsidy Costs

The administration of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi reportedly has launched three new social security schemes in an effort to increase access to insurance and pension coverage for a “large” segment of India’s population. 

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Incofin to Advise Invest In Visions’ IIV-Microfinance Fund

Incofin Investment Management, a private Belgian company, recently became the fund advisor of Invest In Visions’ IIV-Microfinance Fund, which was launched in October 2011 to invest in loans to small and medium-sized (tier-2 and tier-3) microfinance institutions in developing countries [1].

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: World Savings and Retail Banking Institute (WSBI), Child and Youth Finance International (CYFI) Partner to Promote Youth Financial Inclusion

The World Savings and Retail Banking Institute (WSBI), a Switzerland-based association of approximately 1,000 financial intermediaries from 89 countries, and Child and Youth Finance International (CYFI), a Netherlands-based nonprofit organization that promotes youth financial access and education, have signed a memorandum of understanding to formalize their ongoing collaboration with the aim of empowering people around the world between the ages of 6 and 30, in particular by increasing their financial capabilities, helping them to develop livelihoods and improving their access to “appropriate” financial services. 

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: CGAP (Consultative Group to Assist the Poor) Seeks Partners for Customer-Centric Financial Services Project

CGAP (Consultative Group to Assist the Poor), a US-based nonprofit policy and research center devoted to worldwide growth of financial access, is searching for financial service providers with whom to partner to increase customer centricity within the providers’ systems.

SPECIAL REPORT: Frédéric Ruaz on Semaine Africaine de la Microfinance (SAM, African Microfinance Week), June 29 – July 3, 2015, Dakar, Senegal

MicroCapital: What can attendees expect to see at Semaine Africaine de la Microfinance (SAM)?

Frédéric Ruaz: You will find most of the sessions involve managers of several types of organizations: microfinance institutions (MFIs), public entities and private funds. In addition to fostering debate, we aim SAM to bridge practitioners with experts, South with North, and even small MFIs with large MFIs. Indeed, SAM is the largest microfinance meeting place in Africa.

MC: Is there a session that you think attendees may find particularly valuable?

FR: That is a tough question, as SAM offers such a diversity of panels. On Wednesday, July 1, the second session will focus mostly on social entrepreneurship.

MICROFINANCE EVENT: 26th Annual SRI Conference on Sustainable, Responsible, Impact Investing, November 3-5, 2015, The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, United States

Event Name: 2015 SRI Conference on Sustainable, Responsible, Impact Investing

Event Date: November 3 to November 5, 2015

Event Location: The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States

Cost: The early registration rate of USD 995 is available until September 9, 2015, A regular registration rate of USD 1,085 is available from September 12 to October 13, 2015, and late registration rate of USD 1195 is available after October 13, 2015. Presenters, students, journalists and sponsor representatives are eligible for an entry price of USD 535 per head.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Belgium’s Impulse Microfinance Investment Fund Exits from MFIs in India, Mexico

During the year ending December 2014, the Impulse Microfinance Investment Fund (Impulse Fund), which is managed by Belgium’s Incofin Investment Management (Incofin), sold its equity stakes in India-based Grameen Koota and the Mexican operations of El Salvador-based Apoyo Integral Inversiones, according to a recent announcement by Incofin.

MICROCAPITAL PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Improving the Wellbeing of the Poorest of the Poor; Finance in Motion’s Impact Investment Report; Investing in Africa’s Small, Growing Businesses

“A multifaceted program causes lasting progress for the very poor: Evidence from six countries;” published by American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 2015-05, available at http://dspace.mit.edu/handle/1721.1/97047

This study reports that a multifaceted “graduation” program generated improvements in the wellbeing of the “poorest of the poor.”

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: China’s Zuoli Micro-finance Obtains Government Approval to Lend to Online Retailers

Zuoli Kechuang Micro-finance Company, a microfinance institution in China, recently obtained approval from the Financial Work Office of the government of Zhejiang Province to cooperate with online money lending platforms and issue loans to online retailers nationwide. The company expects these loans to be in amounts of approximately RMB 500,000 (USD 80,000) at an annualised interest rate of approximately 15 percent.

MICROFINANCE EVENT: AITEC Banking & Mobile Money Lagos 2015, July 28 – 29, 2015, Lagos, Nigeria

Event Name: AITEC Banking & Mobile Money Lagos 2015

Event Date: July 28 – 29, 2015

Event Location: Eko Hotel, Adetokunbo Ademola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria

Event Theme: Financial Empowerment through Trusted Payment Solutions

Event Summary: Now entering its eighth year, AITEC (African Information Technology Exhibitions and Conferences) Banking & Mobile Money Lagos 2015 will address issues in Nigeria’s financial services sector, including developments in payment technologies, best practices in information technology project deployment, and trends in customer service delivery. Additionally, broader themes of risk management, governance, regulation and compliance will be covered.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Oradian Raises Seed Funding to Scale its Instafin Banking Software Platform Across West Africa

Oradian, a Croatian startup that provides cloud-based software for microfinance institutions in developing economies, announced recently that it has raised seed funding from various investors to scale its products across West Africa, an effort that will include expanding its team in its offices in Croatia and Nigeria.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: International Finance Corporation (IFC) to Loan $15m to Chase Bank Kenya, Advise on Financial Access for Women Entrepreneurs

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the US-based World Bank Group, recently announced an agreement to provide a loan of USD 15 million and 15 months of advisory services to Chase Bank Kenya, a privately owned bank in Kenya [1].

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Social Performance Task Force (SPTF), CERISE Release Updated SPI4 Assessment Tool

The Social Performance Task Force (SPTF), a US-based nonprofit charged with addressing questions about measuring and managing social performance, and the France-based network CERISE (Comité d’Echanges de Réflexion et d’Information sur les Systèmes d’Epargne-crédit) recently released version 1.2 of SPI4, their assessment tool for the social performance of microfinance institutions. 

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) Donates $1.2m to Effort by Center for Latin American Monetary Studies to Improve Remittance Market in Latin America

The Multilateral Investment Fund, a member of the US-based IDB (Inter-American Development Bank) Group, has donated USD 1.2 million to fund a collaborative project with the Center for Latin American Monetary Studies, an association of Latin American and Caribbean central banks (also known by its Spanish acronym CEMLA).