MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: India’s RBL Bank Acquires 10% Equity Stake in Utkarsh Micro Finance

RBL Bank Limited, an institution formerly known as Ratnakar Bank Limited (RBL) that is headquartered in the Indian state of Maharashtra, recently announced its plan to buy a 9.99-percent stake in Utkarsh Micro Finance, a non-banking financial institution based in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: CGAP, Citi Foundation Launch Digital Financial Inclusion Policy Program in China, Indonesia, Philippines

CGAP (Consultative Group to Assist the Poor), a US-based, nonprofit research center that aims to facilitate the expansion of financial access, and the Citi Foundation, the charitable arm of US-based financial services firm Citigroup, recently launched the “East Asia Digital Financial Inclusion Program”.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: JazzCash Mobile Money Users in Pakistan to Gain Access to Merchants Accepting Visa Cards

JazzCash, a mobile money service of Pakistan-based cellular phone network Mobilink, and Visa, a US-based payment technology company, recently announced that JazzCash Mobile Account customers will be able to make purchases from the millions of merchants worldwide that accept Visa payment cards, including approximately 50,000 retail outlets in Pakistan.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: GSMA Facilitates Launch of Interoperable Mobile Money Services in Madagascar

The Groupe Special Mobile Association (GSMA), a membership organization of 800 telecoms operating under the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) standard, recently announced that all of the mobile operators present in Madagascar- Airtel Money, mVola and Orange Money- will make their services interoperable across the country.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Microfinance Institutions in Pakistan to be Registered as Non-Banking Financial Companies, Regulated by Securities and Exchange Commission

The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) recently announced plans to bring all non-deposit taking microfinance institutions (MFIs) and related nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) under the non-banking finance company (NBFC) framework in an effort to improve the regulation and monitoring of their activities.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Tigo Tanzania Distributes $2.5m in Profit to Customers, Agents of Digital Payment Platform Tigo Pesa

Tigo Tanzania, a brand of Swedish telecom provider Millicom, recently announced it paid TZS 5.6 billion (USD 2.5 million) of its profits to Tigo Pesa users.

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

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

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Telenor Pakistan Acquires Additional 49% Equity Stake in Tameer Microfinance Bank, Bringing Its Ownership to 100%

Telenor Pakistan, a subsidiary of Norway-based telecom provider Telenor Group, recently bought additional shares of the Tameer Microfinance Bank, a Pakistan-based provider of microfinance services, increasing its stake from 51 percent to 100 percent.

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: GSMA Launching “Connected Women Commitment” to Extend Mobile Money, Internet Usage Among Women

The GSM Association (GSMA), a coordinating group for telecoms operating under the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) standard, recently announced that it and its members are launching the “Connected Women Commitment” with the goal of lessening the “mobile gender gap” [1].

MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Stellar, Oradian Set Up Payment Transfer Network Among Rural Nigerian Microfinance Institutions

Stellar, a US-based nonprofit technology provider, and Oradian, a Croatia-based software developer serving financial organizations in West Africa, are setting up a “payment transfer network” to connect rural Nigerian microfinance institutions (MFIs).

MICROFINANCE EVENT: “Mifos Tech Days 2016 – Innovation for Innovators” to Examine Implementation of Open Source Microbanking Information System Mifos, March 8-11, 2016, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Event Name: Mifos Tech Days 2016 – “Innovation for Innovators”

Event Dates: March 8-11, 2016

Event Location: Volkshotel, Amsterdam, Netherlands