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Apr 2018
Bangladesh: Why We Should Rethink Financial Inclusion
April, 30 2018
Bangladesh - If financial institutions want to encourage higher adoption and greater usage of financial services among women then they need to ensure that their products are designed to fit their unique financial lives. ...
Sam Mendelson and Daniel Rozas, European Microfinance Platform: Helping Microfinance Investors Responsibly Select a Buyer
April, 30 2018
Global - Whatever the reason, exiting ‘responsibly’ is particularly important when the asset being sold involves the provision of key services to vulnerable populations. Yet there is no codified guide, let alone regulation concerning how this should be done. ...
IFC May Extend $40m Debt to Cambodian Microlender Amret
April, 29 2018
Cambodia - The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private lending arm of the World Bank Group, has proposed to extend a loan of up to $40 million to Amret Company Limited, a deposit-taking microfinance institution (MFI) in Cambodia. ...
'Unprecedented Opportunities' for Reaching the Unbanked
April, 28 2018
Global - For Dr. Ruth Goodwin-Groen, managing director of Better than Cash Alliance, the most important takeaway is the role that governments can play in making digital payments a priority. She points to India and China, both of which have taken vigorous steps to boost digital payments; those countries have achieved 80% account ownership ...
IFC and Didi Chuxing Partner on Women’s Empowerment, Climate and Financial Inclusion in Emerging Markets
April, 27 2018
Global - Didi Chuxing ("DiDi"), the world’s leading mobile transportation platform, and IFC, a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group ("WBG") signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to drive gender equality, digital financial inclusion, green finance and cross-border cooperation in emerging markets ...
Pakistan: Poverty Goes Down More Than 50 Percent
April, 27 2018
Pakistan - Poverty has seen over 50 percent reduction during the past one decade as the percentage of people living below poverty line has declined from 50.4 percent in 2005-06 to 24.3 percent in 2015-16 ...
Fintech for the Financially Excluded?
April, 26 2018
Global - Financial technology has the potential to help lift millions out of poverty. But are we adequately assessing its risks? ...
Cryptocurrency Infused Islamic Microfinance Fund Launches in Central Java
April, 25 2018
Global - This week the firm Blossom Finance announced the open enrollment for an Islamic microfinance fund that will accept multiple cryptocurrencies such as BCH, ETH, and BTC ...
V. D'souza, Senior Correspondent, Entrepreneur India: India - This Is How Technology Is Helping Small Banks to Compete with Large Ones
April, 24 2018
India - While upgrading to small finance banks, these financial companies, largely microfinance institutions (MFIs), reported challenges in terms talent acquisition, updated technology, product innovation, etc. But very few spoke about the competition ...
K. Thacker, Regional Director, MetLife: A Test Case for Digital Leap-Frogging - What the Financial Inclusion Community Can Learn from Vietnam
April, 24 2018
Vietnam - What ultimately motivates us is not innovation or technology for its own sake, but rather for its potential to move millions of people who have always had to make do with informal financial services into digitally enabled alternatives that are safer, affordable, convenient — and that can better help them build the lives they want ...
China’s Record in Poverty Reduction Unparalleled in Human History: British expert
April, 23 2018
China - Since China started the reform and opening-up drive nearly 4 decades ago, over 700 million Chinese have shaken off poverty, accounting for over 70 percent of global poverty reduction in the period ...
Paraguay’s Self-Sustaining Agricultural School Helps Rural Students Learn and Earn
April, 22 2018
Paraguay - In 2002, the school was transferred to the NGO Fundación Paraguaya, Paraguay’s first microfinance institution, with the hope that the organization could find a way to support it. Within a year, the San Francisco Agricultural School was transformed into an enterprise-based agricultural school, founded on a new model of financial self-sufficiency. ...
Arab Monetary Fund to Create Clearing and Settlement Entity
April, 22 2018
Global - The Arab Monetary Fund (AMF) will establish an independent regional entity for the clearing and settlement of intra-Arab payments in order to help bolster trade and investment between Arab nations ...
India: Number of Adult Indians with Bank Accounts Rises to 80%
April, 20 2018
India - The report shows the rapid increase in financial inclusion that has taken place in India, with an increasing number of account holders in the country. The share was just 35% of the adults in 2011 ...
World Bank Issues First-Ever Poverty Bond, Gets $1.5 billion
April, 19 2018
Global - The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA) launched the world’s first poverty bond this week, a debt offering representatives say is designed to lift up the poor, and global investors literally couldn’t get enough. While IDA, which has never before raised money through a bond, issued just $1.5 billion in debt, international investors pledged $4.6 billion in offers – making the bond more than three times oversubscribed, a World Bank spokesman told Yahoo Finance ...
Kenya: IBM’s Latest Blockchain Venture Brings Microfinancing to Africa’s SMEs
April, 18 2018
Kenya - IBM is rolling out a new supply chain finance platform across Africa, using machine learning algorithms and blockchain technology to extend microloans to small businesses ...
Private Debt Impact Investing Offers Competitive Financial Performance
April, 17 2018
Global - As evidence mounts that impact investments can generate returns competitive with conventional investment returns, the same is true in the private debt asset class, according to a report released Tuesday by the Global Impact Investing Network and Symbiotics, a market access platform for impact investing ...
World Bank Group Helps Strengthen Credit Reporting to Boost Access to Finance in Europe and Central Asia
April, 17 2018
Global - The World Bank Group is supporting the creation of a new association designed to help strengthen credit reporting practices and bolster access to finance in Europe and Central Asia ...
Nigeria: BaoBaB Microfinance Commissions Branch at Alaba
April, 17 2018
Nigeria - BaoBaB Microfinance Bank has commissioned a branch at the Alaba International market, Lagos, at the weekend, in efforts to impress its pursuit of being a leading digital financial inclusion group ...
Nigeria: Thumbs Up - Lifeline for MSMEs
April, 16 2018
Nigeria - Micro, small and medium scale enterprises (MSMEs) play a major role in most economies, particularly in developing countries. In fact, MSMEs are recognised globally as the nucleus of sustainable growth, job creation and poverty reduction. They contribute up to 45 per cent of total employment and up to 33 per cent of national income (GDP) in emerging economies, according to a report by the World Bank ...
Kazakhstan to Get Huge IFC Loan for its Microfinance
April, 16 2018
Kazakhstan - International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, is providing a senior syndicated loan of $82 million equivalent in Kazakh tenge to “Microfinance organization “KMF” LLC, a leading Kazakh microfinance institution, to boost lending to micro and small enterprises, including women entrepreneurs and customers in rural areas of Kazakhstan, the press service of IFC said in a message ...
Sub-Saharan Africa: Study Tips Micro-Loans to Bridge Housing Shortfall Among Poor
April, 15 2018
Sub-Saharan Africa - Housing microfinance and small non-mortgage-backed short-term loans can bridge the financial gap faced in addressing growing housing needs in the region, a new study by Habitat and Mastercard Foundation shows. The findings in the report Building the Business Case for Housing Microfinance in sub-Saharan Africa shows that there is a demand for housing microfinance among families or individuals earning as little as Sh500 a day who are seeking to build, extend, or renovate their home ...
Sun Global Investments Acts as Joint Lead Manager On 5 Year Us$ 150 Million Masala Bond Issuance by India’s Dewan Housing Finance Limited
April, 14 2018
India - Sun Global Investments, the London based boutique investment bank, acted as joint lead managers with Barclays Bank, UBS and Yes Bank. Dewan Housing Finance Limited(DHFL) has priced its first $150million Masala bond. The bonds are listed on the London Stock Exchange ...
Pakistan: With Robust Demand, Microfinance Market Grows 35-40% Annually
April, 13 2018
Pakistan - FINCA Microfinance Bank Chief Executive Officer Mudassar Aqil said the microfinance market in Pakistan was expanding at an average of around 35-40% annually and the ratio could further increase in coming years. “Five years ago, the microfinance market was not even half of what it is today,” said Aqil in an interview with The Express Tribune. Total market size is estimated at around 27 million borrowers, of which the microfinance sector has 4.5 million borrowers ...
Jamaica: Gov’t Looking to Increase Access to Funding for SMES
April, 12 2018
Jamaica - Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Audley Shaw, says more creative ways are being explored to provide additional funding sources for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) ...
AfDB Sets $200m to Aid 600,000 African Farmers
April, 12 2018
Global - The African Development Bank’s (AfDB) has signed a $200 million Soft Commodity Finance Facility agreement with the Export Trading Group ...
Smartphones Are Common in Myanmar: Is Digital Finance Far Behind?
April, 11 2018
Myanmar - High smartphone penetration coupled with developed country data use levels suggest that Myanmar is poised for large-scale digital financial services adoption. If the experiences of countries like China are any indication, when this happens it will not be because the Myat Su’s of the world embrace financial services for their own sake. It will be because they couldn’t do something else — whether selling products online or gifting a cup of coffee to a friend via an app — without them ...
Pakistan: Women Who Shine
April, 10 2018
Pakistan - This week, You! highlights a few success stories of women who changed their lives by starting their own businesses with the help of a microfinance institution.. ...
Asia: UBS Wealth Launches Sustainable Portfolio
April, 09 2018
Asia - UBS Wealth Management has launched a cross-asset portfolio in Asia based on sustainable investing that aims to mirror the firm’s traditional strategies ...
India: Avendus Finance Plans to Enter SME Financing
April, 09 2018
India - Avendus Finance has plans to begin its financing services for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) by lending to vendors, dealers and distributors of mid-market businesses ...
Pembina Valley Reveals Strong Ties To Paraguay
April, 08 2018
Paraguay - To break the cycle of poverty nearly 26 percent of the country lives in, GAIN has introduced micro-loans for the creation of small businesses and training programs ...
9 Million Vietnamese People Still Living in Extreme Poverty: Report
April, 07 2018
Vietnam - The poor faces a widening gap in terms of access to upper secondary education and improved water and sanitation. Nine million Vietnamese people are still living in extreme poverty, according to a World Bank report released on Thursday which calls for more alleviation efforts despite the success so far ...
Mauritania: Organizing Farmers in Africa Crucial
April, 07 2018
Mauritania - As of December 2017, IFAD has supported 39 ongoing programmes and projects in 23 countries in West and Central Africa, representing US$1.3 billion in IFAD financing. More than 5 million people, 54 percent of whom are women are benefitting from the investment. Since its founding in 1977, IFAD has supported national efforts to improve the lives of smallholder farmers and poor rural people around the world by financing more than 1,000 development projects, with a value of $19.7 billion ...
Nicaragua Advances in Poverty Reduction, States FAO
April, 06 2018
Nicaragua - Nicaragua is making progress today in reducing poverty, reported the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), which highlights the favorable economic performance of the country ...
Sub-Saharan Africa: Housing Microfinance Can Become Major Offering for Financial Institutions – Study
April, 05 2018
Sub-Saharan Africa - A new study from Habitat for Humanity says that housing microfinance can and should become a mainstream offering for financial institutions in Sub-Saharan Africa. Housing microfinance consists of small, non-mortgage backed loans starting at just a few hundred dollars that can be offered to low-income populations in support of incremental building practices ...
EIB Powers African Solar Firm d.light with US$25m Funding
April, 05 2018
Global - The European Investment Bank (EIB) has provided US$25 million in financing to the Nairobi-based solar company d.light to help it reach its goal of hitting 10 million solar installations in the next five years ...
Atlas Renewable Energy Announces 1st Solar Project in Mexico
April, 04 2018
Mexico - Atlas Renewable Energy announced today that it acquired from SunPower Corp. the Guajiro solar project in Mexico, with a planned capacity of 126.5 megawatts (MWp) peak (101.4 MW), in the municipality of Nopala de Villagran, state of Hidalgo ...
L. Cojocaru, K. Nguyen, Associates, BFA: Vietnam - Can Tech Humanize Microfinance? An Unexpected Benefit of Going Digital
April, 04 2018
Vietnam - While CEP suspected clients would appreciate the reduction in repetitive questions, what they didn’t anticipate was the extent to which digitization would also humanize the interactions between customers and loan officers, further strengthening CEP’s connection with its customers ...
EBRD Provides €5 Million for Energy Efficiency in Bosnia
April, 04 2018
Bosnia and Herzegovina - The finance is provided under the Bank’s €85 million Green Economy Financing Facility (GEFF) for the Western Balkans. Incentives and technical cooperation in support of green technology investments will be provided by the European Union (EU), Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance and the European Western Balkans Joint Fund under the Western Balkans Investment Framework ...
BitPay Raises $40M in Series B Funding to Expand into Emerging Asian Markets
April, 03 2018
Global - As a result of the technology provided by BitPay, hundreds of thousands of businesses around the world are now able to accept bitcoin payments. Popular brands like Microsoft, Newegg, Namecheap, Gyft, Takeaway.com and Virgin Galactic use BitPay. The BitPay Wallet consumer adoption is also growing, with a monthly average of more than $3 billion in transactions ...
Nigeria: CBN, Banks, MMOs Roll Out Agent Network for Financial Inclusion
April, 03 2018
Nigeria - The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Deposit Money Banks (DMB), and licensed Mobile Money Operators (MMOs) and Super Agents have reached agreement to fund an initiative-Shared Agent Network Expansion (SANE) ...
Azerbaijan’s Microfinance Organizations to Get Help in Attracting Financing
April, 03 2018
Azerbaijan - The program will allow raising cooperation with AMFA to a new level, which will allow, for example, jointly attracting financing and organizing joint events. The Microfinance Center works with 111 organizations, including 77 microfinance institutions ...
Malaysia Rolls Out $6.4m Microcredit Scheme for Young Chinese, SMEs
April, 03 2018
Malaysia - Malaysia is looking to uplift the country’s young ethnic Chinese entrepreneurs and small and medium enterprises and to digitize their businesses with an RM25 million (US$6.4 mil) microcredit scheme ...
India: Spate of Defaults in Microfinance Securitisation Transactions Raises Concern
April, 03 2018
India - Recent defaults in seven microfinance securitisation transactions with an initial senior-class pass through certificate amount of Rs 849.34 crore and an initial rating predominantly in the ‘A’ category have again highlighted the need for greater caution in evaluating the microfinance loan securitisation, according to India Ratings and Research ...
R. Baylor, Research Associate, WDI: Here’s How to Play Matchmaker to Social + Business Metrics ‘Power Couples’
April, 03 2018
Global - For many businesses and organizations, the idea of measuring their impacts is usually one of three things: scary, elusive or just plain boring. To make matters worse, evaluators have a rotten reputation for using too much annoying technical jargon. While there is some truth to these stereotypes, it doesn’t have to be all bad ...
Cambodia: Microfinance for Plantation Families
April, 03 2018
Cambodia - The Agriculture Ministry and the government-run Rural Development Bank have discussed setting up a fund to support family rubber farmers ...
India: Altum Credo Home Finance to Raise $9.8 mn from Aavishkaar, Others
April, 02 2018
India - Altum Credo Home Finance Pvt. Ltd has received a commitment of Rs 64 crore ($9.85 million) from impact investment firm Aavishkaar Venture Management Services and a bunch of wealthy individuals, a media report said ...
India: Micro Finance Institutions Join Hands for Poverty Alleviation in Sindh
April, 02 2018
India - Telenor Micro finance Bank has entered into a partnership with Thar deep Micro finance Foundation (TMF), a leading Pakistani nonprofit working for poverty alleviation, for swift and secure digital disbursal and repayment of credits to the beneficiaries in rural areas of the Sindh ...
Top Microfinance Banks in Kenya
April, 02 2018
Kenya - Microfinance banks in Kenya, as well as the regulations that govern them, have experienced significant developments since the mid-90s. Most of these changes have been laid out with the intention to enhance customer experience to make the institutions the excellent lending option for Kenyans ...

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