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Apr 2008
Kenya: Is Microfinance Failing Agriculture ?
April, 30 2008
Nairobi, Kenya - A global food crisis is looming. Food riots due to ever increasing prices for basic foods have been reported. Some governments have embarked on controlling the cost and export of basic food items. ...
Grameen-Jameel secures more than $15m in financing
April, 30 2008
Beirut, Lebanon - Pan-Arab Microfinance Limited (Grameen-Jameel) announced that it has facilitated $15.3m in commercial bank loan financing for two of its microfinance institution (MFI) partners: FONDEP of Morocco and Tamweelcom of Jordan ...
Aga Khan Development Network: 3.5 billion francs in microfinance in Côte d’Ivoire
April, 30 2008
Côte d’Ivoire - The 14th micro-finance agency of the Aga Khan Network (RAK) will be installed in Côte d’Ivoire. Last Tuesday, an agreement setting the “tool of development and fight against poverty” was signed under the co-patronage the Head of State Laurent Gbagbo and His Highness the Aga Khan. ...
Will Bangladeshi-Style Microlending Work in Queens?
April, 29 2008
New York, United States - Wall Street may well be a global center of finance, with billions of dollars in capital flowing back and forth each day. But only 10 miles away, in Jackson Heights, Queens, a more modest banking infrastructure it taking a different approach ...
IFC, KfW set up $1bn Microfinance Program
April, 29 2008
New Delhi, India - International Finance Corporation (IFC) and German development bank KfW have announced the Microfinance Initiative for Asia (MIFA) to commit up to $1 billion through debt and equity investments, structured finance and advisory services to support microfinance institutions (MFIs). ...
Rwanda: Financial Sector Gets World Bank Boost
April, 25 2008
Kigali, Rwanda - The World Bank is to inject an additional $6 million (Rwf 3.3 million) in support of the government reform program of the small and struggling financial sector, RNA reports ...
Micro Finance Bank of Azerbaijan, CredAgro and FINCA have formed 53% of AMFA overall portfolio
April, 25 2008
Baku, Azerbaijan - Azerbaijan Micro Finance Association (AMFA) has published total indicators of its activities in the 1st quarter of 2008. According to the AMFA report, Micro Finance Bank of Azerbaijan, non-bank credit institutions CredAgro and FINCA became the Association’s most active members on disbursal of loans for the reported period ...
The BNP Paribas Foundation and ADIE inaugurate a new office dedicated to microcredit in France
April, 24 2008
Paris, France - On April 21, within the BNP Paribas Foundation's Projet Banlieues initiative, ADIE (an association that grants small loans to start-up businesses that have no access to traditional bank credits), opened a new mircrocredit office in Asnières-sur-Seine, in the Parisian suburbs. ...
Kenya: Stanchart And Faulu Reach Deal On Forex Risks
April, 24 2008
Nairobi, Kenya - Standard Chartered Bank Kenya has arranged the first cross currency swap for a microfinance institution to Faulu Kenya, helping the company guard against foreign exchange related risks ...
Omidyar Network and Unitus to Help Millions of the Working Poor Participate in the Global Economy
April, 24 2008
San Francisco and Seattle, United States - Omidyar Network and Unitus are pleased to announce plans to dramatically expand the worldwide availability of financial services to the poor. Omidyar Network, a philanthropic investment firm established by Pierre and Pam Omidyar, will invest $9 million in Unitus. ...
Microfinance and Health Protection Initiative
April, 23 2008
Davis, United States - Poor health affects all families, but for those living in poverty it is part of a vicious circle. Chronic illness and disease can result in loss of income and crushing debt that can devastate a family for years ...
MicroEnergy Credits Corporation: Greening the Base of the Pyramid
April, 23 2008
Washington D.C., United States - It is impossible to argue against the need for reliable energy at the base of the pyramid (BoP). Energy drives every facet of society, from nourishment to communication. According to the UNDP, at least 1.2 billion people suffer from energy poverty, which has profound impact on health, education, and livelihoods ...
Kenya: Microfinance Sector Under Siege From Banks
April, 23 2008
Nairobi, Kenya - The Kenyan media has recently been awash with branch expansion news from the banking sector. Some of the eye grabbing headlines include: "Equity Bank set to open 18 branches across Kenya, Barclays Bank rolls out seven branches in a period of one year, KCB will open 60 branches across the region- 30 of the branches will be in Kenya, Family Bank to roll out six branches, Co-operative Bank to open 20 more branches. ...
India: HDFC Bank plans mobile banks for microfinance
April, 23 2008
Chennai, India - Bank would soon launch its mobile bank for the benefit of microfinance clients and also to reach the unbanked and under-banked sections of the society, a senior bank executive said on Tuesday. ...
EFSE: Responsible Finance Becomes an Increasing Concern in the Financial Industry
April, 22 2008
Luxembourg - Around 200 leading international market players will gather in Sibiu, Romania, at a conference hosted by the Fund to discuss the issue of Responsible Finance among other cutting-edge topics in development finance. The conference takes place during EFSE's 2nd Annual Meeting, which will be held from May 6-8, 2008. ...
IFC Investment to Boost Access to Finance in the Dominican Republic
April, 21 2008
Washington D.C., United States - IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today announced that it will invest in Centro Financiero BHD in the Dominican Republic, supporting the company’s strategy to make available integrated financial products, including loans for small and medium enterprises, microfinance, remittances, and insurance, which have a significant impact in the economy and job creation ...
2007 CGAP Regional Funder Survey: Sub-Saharan Africa
April, 18 2008
Washington D.C, United States - In 2005, CGAP began surveying funders working in Africa to increase access to finance. In 2007, despite an expected slight decline in global official development assistance, CGAP's survey found that sub-Saharan Africa still draws attention from funders and aid to increase access to finance continues to rise ...
Azerbaijan: MFBA Shareholders Increase Capital
April, 18 2008
Baku, Azerbaijan - Today in Baku, at a General Assembly of Shareholders of MFBA the shareholders signed agreements to increase the share capital of MFBA by AZN 9 million. This will increase the share capital of MFBA to AZN 20 million and total capital of the bank to over AZN 33 million. This increase will make MFBA one of the 10 largest banks in Azerbaijan in terms of capital. ...
Equity in buyout of Ugandan bank
April, 18 2008
Kenya - Equity Bank has made another big move with a buyout of the largest microfinance institution in Uganda. The Sh1.7 billion buyout of Uganda Microfinance Limited (UML) is to be financed through a share swap that will see shareholders of the Ugandan bank acquire a three per cent stake in Equity Bank ...
Microfinance: Women Being Cheated?
April, 17 2008
United States - As microfinance moves more and more into the mainstream of the banking world, is some of its original mission getting lost in the shuffle? That's the implication of a landmark study released on Thursday by Women's World Banking (WWB), a network of microfinance institutions in 29 countries. ...
Book: New Partnerships for Innovation in Microfinance (Matthäus-Maier, Ingrid; Pischke, J. D. von, 2008)
April, 17 2008
Germany - Microfinance has experienced dynamic development. Today, microfinance providers reach close to 100 million clients worldwide and are growing fast. New partnerships expand the impact of microfinance even further. ...
Rwanda: Major Crackdown
April, 16 2008
Kigali, Rwanda - The Office of Prosecutor General has arrested fifteen people accused of causing huge losses to a number of Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) ...
India: Stanchart keen to spread wings in rural India
April, 16 2008
Mumbai, India - Global lender, Standard Chartered Bank, is gearing up to put in more money in the country's fast growing microfinance sector and plans to enhance its presence in rural areas, a top bank official sai ...
Microfinance Grows Up: Success Brings New Challenges for Investors, Practitioners, in Emerging Economies
April, 16 2008
Wharton, United States - One of the more contentious issues has evolved out of the very characteristic that brought so much attention to microfinance in the first place from people unsatisfied with traditional models of philanthropy and development -- the seductive combination of doing good and doing well at the same time ...
Uganda: Borrowing One's Way Out of Poverty
April, 16 2008
Kampala, Uganda - Microfinance is one of the successful mechanisms to root out poverty in several developing countries, but in Uganda, the model has brought mixed fortunes ...
KivaB4B Project to Help Entrepreneurs in Developing Countries
April, 15 2008
Spring House, United States - Advanta Corp. and Kiva have launched the KivaB4B Project, a joint initiative announced today that encourages small business owners and entrepreneurs in the U.S. to support entrepreneurs in developing countries. ...
IDB joins with DID to set up four new CFE financial centres for entrepreneurs
April, 15 2008
Levis, Canada - On Sunday, April 6, during the 2008 Annual Meeting of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), senior executives from Développement international Desjardins (DID) and IDB met in Miami, Florida, to sign a far-reaching agreement aimed at deploying four CFE financial centres for entrepreneurs in four IDB member countries in Latin America and the Caribbean ...
India: Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance ties up with SKS Microfinance
April, 15 2008
Mumbai, India - Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance and SKS Microfinance have joined hands to launch a group insurance product for micro-finance organisation ...
EBRD to extend $30 million syndicated loan to Microfinance Bank of Azerbaijan
April, 14 2008
Baku, Azerbaijan - On May 12, the EBRD Board of Directors is discuss a syndicated loan in the amount of up to USD 30 million to the Microfinance Bank of Azerbaijan for on-lending to Micro and Small Enterprises. ...
IFC and Arab Monetary Fund Support Development of Private Credit Bureaus in the Middle East and North Africa
April, 12 2008
Washington D.C., United States - IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today signed a memorandum of understanding with the Arab Monetary Fund to help create a vibrant and effective credit bureau industry in the Middle East and North Africa. The event took place during the 2008 World Bank Group and IMF Spring Meetings. ...
Can the Cellphone Help End Global Poverty?
April, 12 2008
New York, United States - A cellphone in the hands of an Indian fisherman who uses it to grow his business - which presumably gives him more resources to feed, clothe, educate and safeguard his family - represents a textbook case of bottom-up economic development, a way of empowering individuals by encouraging entrepreneurship as opposed to more traditional top-down approaches in which aid money must filter through a bureaucratic chain before reaching its beneficiaries, who by virtue of the process are rendered passive recipients. ...
International Islamic Finance Forum to focus on finance for the poor
April, 12 2008
Dubai, United Arab Emirates - The premier event in Islamic finance marks seventh year in Dubai with a special focus on ethical and micro-finance in the Muslim world ...
Microfinance Struggles in Benin
April, 11 2008
Boston, United States - In early March, the Benin government, citing operational concerns with the MFI, requested the resignation of PADME’s board and management team. The board and management in turn initiated legal action to prevent the government takeover, and PADME’s staff subsequently undertook supportive industrial action. Since then, an interim director has been appointed, and the staff has returned to work. The prospects for PADME and the future of microfinance in Benin, however, remain unclear. ...
4th Azerbaijan Microfinance Conference, “Microfinance -10 Years of Best practice”
April, 11 2008
Baku, Azerbaijan - Azerbaijan Micro-finance Association (AMFA) will be organizing 2-days 4th Azerbaijan Micro-finance Conference titled “Microfinance-10 years of Best practice” at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Baku ...
Microfinance: Climate change connections
April, 11 2008
Washington D.C., United States - In 2001, the IPCC concluded that “the impacts of climate change will fall disproportionately upon developing countries and the poor persons within all countries.” The poor are least able to cope on their own with the threats to their homes, communities, livelihoods and health. What role might microfinance - the delivery of financial services, including credit, savings, and insurance to the poor- play in reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and helping vulnerable low-income populations adapt to the impacts of climate change ...
April 15-17 Speaker's Corner on Staff Incentives
April, 10 2008
United States - According to the recent “Banana Skins Survey 2008” among 300 microfinance stakeholders, staffing is one of the biggest and fastest rising risks in microfinance institutions (MFI). Staff incentive schemes (SIS) play a key role in an human resources strategy: not only do they influence who gets hired and who resigns, but they are mainly designed to increase organizational efficiency by enhancing staff productivity and loan portfolio quality ...
Pro Mujer Peru Makes Low Cost Life Insurance Available to 43,000 Poor Women Entrepreneurs
April, 09 2008
New York, United States - Pro Mujer Peru, a microfinance institution in the Pro Mujer network, and insurance provider InVita, an affiliate of ING and Grupo Wiese, have made life insurance affordable to more than 43,000 female micro entrepreneurs, a third of whom live on less than US$1 a day ...
Zurich launches Microinsurance Research Project in China
April, 08 2008
Zurich, Switzerland - Zurich Financial Services Group (Zurich) announced today that it has signed an agreement with Nan Kai University’s Department of Risk Management and Insurance (DRMI), based in Tianjin City, to launch a research project on the demand for microinsurance products in China. This research project is a further concrete step in the Group’s efforts to expand its insurance coverage to the under-privileged population segment in China ...
WB Urges Governments, Private Sector to Facilitate Remittances
April, 08 2008
Washington D.C., United States - World Bank today urged governments and remittance service providers to put in place a new set of measures to facilitate the flow of remittances to countries in Latin America that are threatened by the U.S. economic slowdown. Some of the actions recommended include: increasing competition and transparency among service providers in order to reduce the costs of remittance transfers, and increasing access to banking services among migrants and recipients to enhance the development impact of remittances ...
Conference: Microfinance: The Investment Opportunity
April, 07 2008
San Fransisco, United States - July 14th - 15th, 2008. Hilton Fisherman's Wharf San Francisco, CA. Financial Research Associates in partnership with the Silicon Valley Microfinance Network proudly present an event like no other in the world's epicenter of socially responsible investing. Microfinance: The Investment Opportunity will cover all aspects of investing in institutions that provide banking services to the world’s poor. ...
South Africa: Credit act turns foes to friends in will to survive
April, 05 2008
South Africa - Since its introduction in June last year, the National Credit Act (NCA) has pushed the micro-lending industry into consolidation mode as foes turn into friends to survive harsh competition in the market ...
IADB: Latin America microfinance may reach $20 bln by 2012
April, 05 2008
Miami, United States - Microfinance loans could offer more than $20 billion in credit to the poor in Latin America by 2012, up from $8.6 billion last year, as services expand and rates fall, an Inter-American Development Bank official said on Saturday ...
Microfinance’s Success Sets Off a Debate in Mexico
April, 05 2008
New York, United States - Carlos Danel and Carlos Labarthe turned a nonprofit that lent money to Mexico’s poor into one of the country’s most profitable banks. But not all of their colleagues in the world of microlending — so named for the tiny loans it grants — are heaping praise on the co-executives of Compartamos. Some are vilifying them as “pawnbrokers” and “money lenders.” They are the center of a fractious debate: how far should microfinance go toward becoming big business ...
Milestone for Microfinance: ACCION Network Reaches 3M Clients
April, 03 2008
Boston, United States - ACCION International, a pioneer and leader in global microfinance, today announced that the number of active clients it reaches with small business loans and other financial services through its network of 35 partner organizations in 25 countries has recently surpassed 3 million ...
Philippines: Banks to start offering housing microfinance loan product
April, 03 2008
Philippines - Low Income earners may now take advantage of another affordable housing loan product after the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) sealed an agreement to implement the housing microfinance program. ...
Kenya: CBK set to allow mobile banking in rural areas
April, 01 2008
Kenya - The Central Bank has pledged to review its requirements for bank branch premises to allow further penetration of banking services in the rural areas ...
Wiring Money Turns Wireless in New Plan
April, 01 2008
United States - Western Union Co., hoping to boost its share of the money-transfer market, is teaming up with RadioShack Corp. and a small wireless company to offer a service that lets people send money through their cellphones ...
ECOBANK and ACCION Launch Microfinance Operations in Ghana
April, 01 2008
Accra, Ghana - EB-ACCION Savings & Loan, a microfinance bank formed through a partnership between ACCION International, a pioneer in microfinance program development, and ECOBANK, the leading pan-African bank, has received its license to begin microfinance operations in Ghana. ...
India: MFI sun rising in the east
April, 01 2008
India - Micro financial institutions are fast growing in eastern India, even as the south remains the place to consolidate the gains of the past. ...
Nobel laureate Yunus unveils Bangladesh clean water deal
April, 01 2008
Paris, France - Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus on Monday unveiled a deal between his pioneering Grameen bank and French group Veolia Environment to provide clean water to poor rural communities in Bangladesh ...
IFC’s 10th Annual Global Private Equity Conference in association with EMPEA
April, 01 2008
Washington D.C., United States - This conference will take place May 15-16, 2008 in Washington, DC. The theme for this two-day conference is Creating Opportunities and Building Value. ...

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