MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: The MasterCard Foundation, Root Capital to Invest $5.2m in Early-Stage Agricultural Businesses in West Africa

Root Capital, a US-based nonprofit investment fund, and The MasterCard Foundation, a Canadian organization founded by the US-based payments firm MasterCard Worldwide, recently announced a partnership aimed at raising incomes for 300,000 smallholder farmers in West Africa.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Loaning up to $2m to Arvand of Tajikistan for On-lending to Micro- and Small Enterprises (MSEs)

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), a UK-based multilateral institution, recently agreed to provide loan funds of up to TJS 15.7 million (USD 2 million) to Arvand, a Tajikistan-based microfinance institution (MFI), for on-lending to local micro- and small enterprises (MSEs).

MICROFINANCE PAPER ROUND-UP: Managing Risks for Smallholders in Africa, Financing Shortfall for Women-owned Enterprises in Indonesia, Perspectives of Banks in Emerging Countries on Financial Inclusion

“Finance for Smallholders: Opportunities for Risk Management by Linking Financial Institutions and Producer Organisations;” by J de la Rive Box et al; published by the Food & Business Knowledge Platform, Agri Pro Focus and the Platform for Inclusive Finance NPM; May 2016;  22 pages; available at: http://www.inclusivefinanceplatform.nl/documents/npm%20summary%20report%20finance%20for%20smallholders.pdf

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: VisionFund International Buying Majority Equity Stake in Opportunity’s Microfinance Institution in Democratic Republic of Congo

Pending regulatory approval, VisionFund International, a US-based affiliate of the Christian humanitarian organization World Vision International, recently agreed to purchase a majority stake in Opportunity International’s (OI’s) microfinance institution (MFI) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Sierra Leone to Lend to SMEs at Single-digit Interest Rates without Collateral

The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Sierra Leone (SMESL), which was established by that nation’s parliament in 2015 [2], recently announced it will provide loans at interest rates below 10 percent per year without a collateral requirement, in an effort to strengthen small and medium-sized enterprises in the country.

MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: MFI Client Satisfaction and Consumer Protection in Peru; Mobile Microfinance Users Predicted to Triple by 2020; Mobilizing Savings Through Agency Banking

“Voice of the Client: An analysis of client satisfaction and consumer protection across four microfinance institutions in Peru,” by J. Foelster, A. Pierantozzi, M. Pistelli; published by the Microfinance Information Exchange (MIX) in collaboration with Hivos People Unlimited; February 2016; 31 pages; available at: http://www.themix.org/sites/default/files/Voice%20of%20the%20Client%20Peru_0.pdf

MICROFINANCE EVENT: 4th Africa Financial Services Investment Conference (AFSIC); May 4-6, 2016; London, United Kingdom

Event Name: 4th Africa Financial Services Investment Conference (AFSIC)

Event Dates: May 4-6, 2016

Event Location: The Park Plaza Riverbank Hotel; London, United Kingdom

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Bank Negara Indonesia (BNI) to Distribute Funds from Government-Backed Kredit Usaha Rakyat (KUR) Microloan Program via Rural Banking Members of Perbarindo

Bank Negara Indonesia (BNI), a state-owned bank in Indonesia, recently signed an agreement with Perbarindo, an Indonesian association of rural banks, to support the government-backed microloan program Kredit Usaha Rakyat (KUR) channeling “subsidized loans” to micro- small and medium-sized enterprises.

MICROFINANCE PUBLICATION ROUND-UP: Financing Necessary for SMEs to Grow; Microfinance Challenges in the Arab World; Incofin on MFIs’ Social Performance

“ADB Report: Asia SME Finance Monitor 2014;” by S. Shinozaki, T. Chaiken, S. Jain, K. Dorofev, C. T. Delos Santos and J. Bautista; published by the Asian Development Bank (ADB); September 2015; 318 pages; available at: http://www.adb.org/sites/default/files/publication/173205/asia-sme-finance-monitor2014.pdf

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: FMO Completes $153m Syndicated Loan to Sri Lanka’s Commercial Leasing & Finance (CLC)

Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO), a Dutch development bank, recently served as lead arranger and facility agent to finalize a USD 153 million senior secured syndicated loan for Sri Lanka’s Commercial Leasing & Finance (CLC).

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Qalaa Holdings Planning to Sell 70% Stake in Microlender Tanmeyah to Egyptian Financial Group (EFG) Hermes for $40m

Qalaa Holdings, an Egypt-based investment holding company previously named Citadel Capital, recently announced that it will sell its 70-percent ownership in Tanmeyah, an Egypt-based provider of microloans and microinsurance, to Egyptian Financial Group (EFG) Hermes, an investment bank serving the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: African Development Bank (AfDB), MasterCard Collaborate on Financial Inclusion in Africa

The African Development Bank (AfDB), a multilateral institution providing loans and grants to governments and private companies on the continent; and MasterCard, a US-based payments and technology company, recently announced that they are launching a collaboration aimed at increasing financial inclusion in Africa.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Bangko Sentral Ng Pilipinas (BSP) Allows Micro-Banking Offices (MBOs) to Approve New Deposit Accounts

Bangko Sentral Ng Pilipinas (BSP), the central bank of the Philippines, recently authorized micro-banking offices (MBOs) of financial institutions to extend the range of “allowable activities” [1] with the aim of increasing financial inclusion in the rural parts of the country.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE) Loans $5m to Opportunity Bank Serbia for On-Lending to Micro-, Small Enterprises; Low-Income Households in Rural Serbia

The European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE), a Luxembourg-based microfinance investment vehicle (MIV), recently announced that it will loan EUR 5 million (USD 5.4 million) to Opportunity Bank Serbia (OBS), a branch of US-based microfinance network Opportunity International, to improve access to finance for micro -and small enterprises (MSEs) and low-income households in rural areas of Serbia.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Livelihoods and Food Security Trust Fund (LIFT) Donates $4.5m to World Vision Myanmar for Microfinance Lending, Savings

The Livelihoods and Food Security Trust Fund, a Myanmar-based multi-donor trust fund, recently has donated a three-year USD 4.5 million grant to three organizations affiliated with US-based NGO World Vision, to aid approximately 100,000 people in gaining improved access to financial services.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: ASN-Novib Microcredit Fund Goes Public on Euronext Stock Exchange

The ASN-Novib Microcredit Fund [EUR 54.07 -0.02%] [1], which is managed by the Algemene Spaarbank voor Nederland (ASN Bank), a Dutch bank, and Oxfam Novib, the Dutch branch of UK-based NGO Oxfam International, recently went public on Euronext, a stock exchange in the Dutch city of Amsterdam [2][3].

MICROFINANCE PAPER WRAP-UP: “The Next Stage of Financial Inclusion;” by Dean Karlan; Published by Stanford Social Innovation Review

“The Next Stage of Financial Inclusion;” by D. Karlan; published by the Stanford Social Innovation Review; fall 2014; 9 pages; available at: http://www.ssireview.org/pdf/Fall_2014_The_Next_Stage_of_Financial_Inclusion_1.pdf

This paper investigates the evolving role of nonprofit organizations in providing microcredit to people with low incomes.