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Apr 2016
D. Hardoon, Deputy Head of Research, Oxfam UK: The World's Poorest 50% Are a Trillion Dollars Worse Off - What's Going on?
April, 30 2016
Global - Those living in poverty are getting poorer even though their incomes are rising, Oxfam number-cruncher Deborah Hardoon tries to work out why. ...
India: RBI Proposes P2P Lending Regulations
April, 29 2016
India - The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Thursday initiated steps to regulate the nascent and hitherto unregulated peer-to-peer (P2P) lending business. RBI has proposed registering P2P lending platforms as non-banking financial companies (NBFCs). ...
Why Fintech Is Different in Asia
April, 29 2016
Asia - In the case of fintech, particularly consumer focused services, Asia’s market dynamics and diverse population create a different set of opportunities and challenges than those faced by U.S. fintech entrepreneurs. Here are four factors that make Asia’s fintech landscape different. ...
L. Reed, Director, Microcredit Summit Campaign: Changes Ahead for the Microcredit Summit Campaign
April, 29 2016
Global - As we called for governments and multilateral organizations to tear down the silos in their organizations to combine financial services with other developmental services like social protection, health, housing, and education, we saw that we needed to do the same thing in our own organization. Therefore, in order to strengthen our message and reduce annual recurring costs, we have decided to merge our work with that of RESULTS ...
Rabobank Foundation and the World Bank Team Up to Strengthen Financial Cooperatives for Agrifinance
April, 28 2016
Global - The World Bank and Rabobank Foundation are teaming up to strengthen financial cooperatives in rural areas to improve financial services for smallholder farmers and agricultural SMEs ...
Linking Mobile Banking with Village Groups in Uganda
April, 28 2016
Uganda - How do we reach out when 85% of the unserved population lives outside recognized urban centers ...
Cambodia: Central Bank to Put Focus on MFIs
April, 28 2016
Cambodia - The central bank’s third annual Macroeconomic Conference in November will have only one topic: microfinance ...
Germany & UK to Set Up Micro-finance Investment Company in Pakistan
April, 28 2016
Pakistan - The investment company will help create three hundred thousand new job positions per year ...
Mobile Platform Launched for Credit Unions in Kenya
April, 28 2016
Kenya - A mobile platform that works with saving and credit unions in Kenya will receive mentorship and support from Barclays Africa in a move to promote innovation and growth in financial services ...
India: PEs Exit from MFIs with Manifold Returns
April, 27 2016
India - With Bengaluru-based microfinance company Ujjivan going public on Wednesday, expectations are high that it will bring in the same levels of returns as its peers for PE players ...
China's Banking Regulator Seeks Help from Yunus to Promote Microcredit
April, 27 2016
China - The China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) has sought help from Nobel Laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus to promote microcredit in China to help the country's efforts to reduce poverty and support entrepreneurship among rural people ...
J. Case, Case Foundation: The State of Impact Investing: Is It a Houseboat or Is It Brunch?
April, 26 2016
Global - In the coming year, I’m excited to see how some of the major milestones of recent months will influence the pace and scale of the impact investing movement. I’m hopeful we’ll see more impact funds, more successful exits by impact companies, more data and research on investor experiences to date and a more transparent and organized ecosystem to support this burgeoning marketplace. ...
China: Alibaba's Ant Financial Raises $4.5 Billion in World's Largest Private Tech Investment Round
April, 26 2016
China - According to Ant Financial, “this new round of funding will support Ant Financial in its goal to expand access to financial services in China’s rural areas, while also fueling the company’s globalization. ...
India: PE Investments in Microfinance Firms after 2010 Crisis See Better Returns
April, 25 2016
India - The analysis shows that the returns made by private investors in Equitas show sharp divergence based on whether the investments were made before or after the 2010 Andhra Pradesh microfinance crisis ...
Trending: Blending
April, 23 2016
Global - Meeting the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals will require additional investments of $2.5 trillion a year in things like health care and education for the world’s poorest people, according to UNCTAD, a UN agency ...
Ethiopia: Electronic Cash Payment, Transfer and Transaction Easing Life in Ethiopia
April, 22 2016
Ethiopia - Globally, financial sector policymakers recognize the "game-changing" potential of digital financial inclusion and services. "Digital financial inclusion" can be defined broadly as digital access to and use of formal financial services to those excluded and under served populations ...
India: Microlender Ujjivan Eyes $375M Valuation in IPO
April, 22 2016
India - Bengaluru-based microfinance firm Ujjivan Financial Services Ltd is seeking a valuation of as much as Rs 2,500 crore ($375 million) in an initial public offering that opens on April 28. ...
Tanzania Deploys the First Mobile Money Monitoring Solution for Regulatory Authorities in the World
April, 21 2016
Tanzania - Tanzania is now the first country—in the East African region, and also in the entire world—to implement a Mobile Money monitoring solution. ...
Bangladesh: A Twist on Microfinance Delivers New Weapon Against Poverty
April, 21 2016
Bangladesh - Incorporating flexible repayment models into microfinance can increase benefits, particularly to borrowers, shows a new study by Subir Bairagi, an agricultural economist at the International Rice Research Institute, and Wasel Bin Shadat, an economics lecturer at the University of Manchester ...
Grameen Foundation and ideas42 Launch Partnership to Expand Financial Inclusion in the Philippines
April, 21 2016
Philippines - New initiative aims to reach thousands of low-income people with newly designed products and networks for financial services; supports government's national strategy for financial inclusion. ...
Cambodia: NBC Set for FAST Step Towards Riel Economy
April, 20 2016
Cambodia - The central bank will launch its FAST system tomorrow, the first system offering real time transfers in riel across banks and Microfinance Deposit-taking Institutions (MDIs) – a move that will boost the local currency in a dollarized economy ...
India: IFMR Capital Initiates First Capital Market Transaction for MUDRA
April, 20 2016
India - Kshama Fernandes, MD &CEO of IFMR Capital said "With this transaction, MUDRA demonstrates a crucial facilitating role in ensuring that NBFCs providing microfinance and small business finance are able to access domestic capital in an efficient manner" ...
Microfinance Leader FINCA Bank Georgia Receives Smart Certification for Client Protection
April, 20 2016
Georgia - Today, FINCA Bank Georgia announced it has received Client Protection Certification by the Smart Campaign, a global initiative that certifies the adoption of high ethical standards in the treatment of clients in the microfinance industry ...
Africa: Could Energy Service Be the Key to Banking the Rural Poor?
April, 19 2016
Africa - In Sub-Saharan Africa, 65% of the total population (and over four fifths of the rural population) do not have access to electricity, while 66% of adults do not have a financial account of any kind. Driving financial inclusion and expanding energy access have traditionally been considered separate development objectives. But thanks to revolutions in the distribution and financing of off-grid solar, that may be about to change ...
India: Microfinance Industry is Out of an Unprecedent Crisis, Thanks to Regulations, Diligent Borrowers
April, 19 2016
India - MFIs now understand portfolio concentration risk much better than the pre-crisis days. These days MFIs prefer to spread out their loan books across different states to reduce 'state risk' (or portfolio concentration risk) ...
Trevor Neilson, Co-Founder, i(x) investments: Evolving Investors’ Sense of Self
April, 18 2016
Global - We cannot solve global problems unless the greater world of finance plays an active role—and the key to scaling impact investing is to help investors evolve their sense of self ...
Financial Inclusion and Off-Grid Solar: Three Takeaways
April, 18 2016
Africa - Off-grid solar energy solutions are taking off in the developing world. For the 1.1 billion people living without electricity, the ability to digitally pay for clean energy over time is life changing ...
Tunisia: AFD Provides Enda EUR 10 Million to Finance Small-scale Agriculture
April, 18 2016
Tunisia - Microfinance institution Enda Tamweel has received funding of EUR 10 million, or about 22.8 million Tunisian dinars from the French Development Agency (AFD) to strengthen its lending activity dedicated to agriculture and livestock, the AFD announced last Friday ...
TPG Leads $210 Mln Investment in Indian Microfinance Company
April, 18 2016
India - TPG led a $210 million investment in microfinance company Janalakshmi Financial Services Ltd, building on its 2014 investment in the company. Existing investors Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia, Havells India and Vallabh Bhansali also participated in the funding, along with new investors ...
Myanmar: IFC to Invest $7.5m in Myanma Awba Unit Maha Agriculture
April, 17 2016
Myanmar - International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private lending arm of the World Bank, will extend senior debt of $6 million and an equity injection of $1.5 million into Maha Agriculture Public Co ltd, a subsidiary of Myanma Awba Group ...
IFC Launches Initiative to Improve Kenyan Tea Farmers' Yields
April, 15 2016
Kenya - The World Bank's arm, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), has launched a 4.2 million U.S. dollar initiative to improve yields and income for Kenyan tea farmers ...
IFC Promotes Access to Finance for SMEs in Peru with US$50 Million Loan to Mibanco
April, 15 2016
Peru - The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, disbursed a loan of S/.167.6 million (approximately US$50 million) to Mibanco, the largest microfinance institution in Peru and Latin America, with the aim of increasing financing to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and low-income sectors of the population, thus helping boost job creation and economic growth. ...
The Most Powerful Weapon for Changing the World: How Microfinance Institutions Can Increase Access to Education
April, 14 2016
Global - Education may be the “silver bullet” of development. It is, as Nelson Mandela described it, the “most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” Increase access to quality education for children and adults, and the knock-on effects can be profound – on health, women’s and girls’ opportunities, technology, and the growth of a prosperous middle class and a knowledge economy ...
China: Half of All Microcredit Lenders in Guangdong Deemed Insolvent
April, 13 2016
China - Surge in bad debt comes amid push by Beijing to increase loans for the poor and local government moves to roll out policies to support microlenders ...
Indonesia: Startups to Get $76m in Government’s Micro-credit Guarantee Program
April, 12 2016
Indonesia - Indonesia’s Creative Economy Agency (BEKRAF) Tuesday said it will distribute Rp 1 trillion ($76 million) from the government’s micro-credit guarantee program (KUR) to local startups ...
India: IFC to Invest $38 Million in 3 Housing Finance Companies
April, 12 2016
Global - The three HFCs are exclusively focused on providing access to housing finance to low income borrowers, specifically those employed in the informal sector such as self-employed micro-entrepreneurs and un-organised sector salaried workers. ...
How Mobile Data Could Enhance Microfinance
April, 11 2016
Global - A report by Ericsson has shown that mobile data analytics could bring microfinance to hundreds of millions of individuals and businesses in need of short-term credit ...
IDB Study Says $1.8 Billion Needed to End Poor Housing Conditions in the Caribbean
April, 11 2016
The Caribbean - The report, which analyzed the implementation of social housing programs in the Caribbean from 2000 to 2015, underscores the importance of housing to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the larger agenda in poverty alleviation, economic development, and climate resilience ...
South Africa: International Finance Corp., IFC Asset Management Make $108M Investment in Net 1 UEPS Tech (UEPS)
April, 11 2016
South Africa - IFC and IFC AMC's funds' investments will help Net1 expand regionally, especially into African countries where there is limited banking infrastructure and availability of financial services for the poorest segments of the population ...
Kenya Steps Up Support for Banks
April, 10 2016
Kenya - Kenya’s central bank offered to extend emergency support on Sunday to any institution that faces liquidity problems through no fault of its own amid rising depositor anxiety about the health of the financial services sector in east Africa’s largest economy ...
Latin America: IFC Supports BAF Latam Trade Finance Fund with $70M to Expand Access to Finance to Agribusiness
April, 10 2016
Latin America - IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, provided $70 million to BAF Latam Trade Finance Fund to expand funding for processors that buy agricultural commodities from farmers, as well as companies that supply farmers with crop inputs in Latin America ...
IFC to Extend $21m Debt to Half a Dozen MFIs in Myanmar
April, 10 2016
Myanmar - Increasing its financing exposure in Myanmar, the International Finance Corporation –the private lending arm of the World Bank – is extending a $21-million debt facility to four to six microfinance institutions in the frontier country ...
India: SBI FMO Picks 10% Stake in Micro-finance Firm Satin Creditcare
April, 10 2016
India - SBI FMO Emerging Asia Financial Services Fund has picked up 10 per cent stake in micro-finance institution Satin Creditcare Network Ltd (SCNL), the latter said in a stock market filing. ...
With AfDB Support, 150,000 Liberian Farmers to Benefit from Financing, Innovative Technology
April, 09 2016
Liberia - Liberia, a small country of 4 million inhabitants located in West Africa, is on the verge of undergoing one of the most transformational moments in its agricultural history ...
India: Learnings from the Equitas Holdings IPO
April, 08 2016
India - The success of the Equitas Holdings IPO, the first of the 10 small finance bank licensees to list on the market, throws up some interesting learnings ...
Financing for the Agricultural Sector Represented 14.9% of Bank Loans in Cameroon in 2015
April, 07 2016
Cameroon - Though the share of bank loans given to the agricultural sector in the country is on the rise ( only 7.6% in 2011), it is however necessary to note that these financial supports are still majorly focused on food industries and not on small producers ...
Chase Bank of Kenya Shareholders Keen to Recapitalize Lender
April, 07 2016
Kenya - Chase Bank Kenya Ltd. shareholders are committed to recapitalizing the lender placed under receivership to re-open the institution “as quickly as possible,” the central bank Governor Patrick Njoroge said ...
India: Equitas Holdings IPO Hits Markets, What These Brokerage Houses Are Saying
April, 06 2016
India - The IPO of Equitas Holdings was subscribed 9 per cent in the first day of the offer on Tuesday ...
Letshego Becomes Licensed MasterCard Issuer in Mozambique
April, 06 2016
Mozambique - Letshego Holdings Limited (“Letshego”), announced it has received its official principle issuer license from MasterCard in Mozambique. The partnership will see further payment innovations being introduced into the market to its financial inclusion efforts ...
Seven Essential Guiding Principles to Boost Financial Inclusion Laid Out in New Report
April, 06 2016
Global - Seven guiding principles to help countries increase financial inclusion were set out in a report released on 5 April 2016 by the Committee on Payments and Market Infrastructures (CPMI) and the World Bank Group ...
Myanmar: Central Bank Looks to Mobile Banking to Ramp Up Financial Inclusion
April, 05 2016
Myanmar - The Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM) revealed on its website on Monday the official rules and regulations for mobile financial service providers (MFSPs), seen by observers as a way to reach more rural customers throughout Burma ...
India: Yes Bank Signs USD 50 Mn Loan Agreement with IFC & Goldman Sachs
April, 05 2016
India - The USD50 million YES BANK loan aims to support women in all 29 states and 7 union territories in India ...
Zimbabwe: Steward Bank to Lend to SMEs, Sources U.S $15 Million
April, 05 2016
Zimbabwe - Steward Bank said on Tuesday it would start lending to the country's small to medium scale enterprises (SMEs) from a pool of funds sourced from development finance institutions and internal resources ...
PM Narendra Modi Launches 'Stand up India' to Promote Financial Inclusion
April, 05 2016
India - Giving a push to government's financial inclusion programme, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today launched the 'Stand-up India' scheme under which 1.25 lakh bank branches will provide loans up to Rs 1 crore to SC/ST and women entrepreneurs ...
VisionFund International and Opportunity International Partner to Expand Financial Inclusion for Unbanked Citizens of Democratic Republic Of Congo
April, 05 2016
DRC - Opportunity International, a next generation microfinance organization that invests philanthropic and social impact capital to spark and scale innovative solutions to global poverty, has entered into a share purchase agreement to sell a majority stake of its microfinance institution in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to VisionFund International, World Vision's microfinance arm. ...
Europe: Microfinance - Lending Small, Thinking Big
April, 04 2016
Europe - Microcredit and microfinance are usually terms we associate with underdeveloped and developing countries. But in Europe it has the potential to fill a big gap in the financial services that businesses need, as do people on low incomes. ...
D. Karlan, Professor of Economics, Yale University: Finance for the Poor - How Can Financial Services Work Better for Low-Income Consumers?
April, 04 2016
Global - For the banking sector, the expansion in access is an exciting business opportunity. But numbers can be deceiving—millions more have access to accounts, but account ownership is only the first step towards realizing full financial inclusion ...
Rising Microfinance a Potential Risk for Lankan NBFIs: Fitch
April, 04 2016
Sri Lanka - Sri Lankan non-bank financial institutions’ (NBFIs) rising exposure to microfinance could pose a risk to their credit profiles, Fitch Ratings Lanka said in a recent study ...
Understanding Microfinance in MENA
April, 03 2016
MENA - “There’s a whole generation that is lacking education because they are simply living in a state of war,” Hilal told Wamda. “In the next few years, microfinance will be the solution to helping these people get through the situation and get them back into the economy. ...
China’s CPFA Microfinance May Land $25m Equity from Existing Investor IFC
April, 03 2016
China - CFPA Microfinance Management Co. Ltd., one of China’s largest microfinance players, is raising an equity investment of RMB160 million ($25 million) from the International Finance Corporation, which owns 19.2 per cent stake in the entity ...
Zambia: StanChart, MTN Partner to Boost Financial Inclusion
April, 01 2016
Zambia - Standard Chartered Bank Zambia Plc has partnered with MTN Zambia to operationalise a mobile money platform aimed at promoting cashless transactions and to boost financial inclusion ...
R. Lewis, J. Villasenor and D.M. West, Governance Studies: Bridging the Financial Inclusion Gender Gap
April, 01 2016
Global - The global dialogue surrounding the financial inclusion gender gap has intensified as key stakeholders—including financial service providers, regulatory bodies, policymakers, civil society entities, and consumers—explore how best to engage prospective women customers in ways that meet the needs of both consumers and providers situated within different market contexts ...

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