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Jan 2021
India: World Bank's IFC to Invest $45 Million Equity in upGrad Education
January, 31 2021
India - IFC's investment marks institutional financing round in India, where venture capital backing education technology companies is relatively limited. According to estimates, the Indian ed-tech industry is the second biggest in the world. ...
A Kenyan Insurtech Startup for De-risking Farmers Is Expanding to Asia with New Funding
January, 29 2021
Africa & Asia - Pula raised $6 million in a Series A fundraising this week led by the fund TLcom Capital with participation from Women’s World Banking, which champions women’s financial inclusion ...
ADB and Credo Bank Sign $4m Loan to Support Agricultural MSMEs in Georgia
January, 29 2021
Georgia - ADB’s financing will help Credo to provide additional lending to its clients in the sector to mitigate the resurgence of poverty incidence caused by the pandemic. ...
Indonesian Marketplace App Ula Raises $20 Mn in Series A Round Led by Quona Capital and B Capital Group
January, 29 2021
Indonesia - Indonesia-based e-commerce startup Ula, which plans to transform traditional retail and empowering small retailers through technology, announced on Thursday to have raised $20 million in a Series A funding round led by Quona Capital and B Capital Group ...
Wall Street’s New Mantra: Green Is Good
January, 29 2021
Global - Bankers once saw tackling climate change as a niche issue. Now it is a chance to fuel future profits. Is it a turning point ...
Cambodia - NBC: $4.2B in Loans Restructured since March
January, 27 2021
Cambodia - Financial institutions in Cambodia restructured some $4.2 billion in loans for 285,074 borrowers as of December 31 since the National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) on March 27 issued a circular on loan restructuring during Covid-19, the central bank said in its 2020 annual report ...
OPEC Fund Supports Post-COVID-19 African Infrastructure with $50m Loan to Africa Finance Corporation
January, 27 2021
Africa - The proceeds of the 10-year loan to AFC will help address the continent’s well-known infrastructure financing gap. The loan will also support increased financial flows to Africa and contribute to COVID-19 recovery efforts in African economies by freeing up government funds to meet urgent financing needs related to the pandemic ...
AXA IM Alts Leads New Investment Round in Sanergy’s Africa and Asia Expansion
January, 27 2021
Africa - As part of the investment, the consortium made a secondary investment to acquire the stake held by Acumen and by Global Partnerships. Both of these partners were early stage investors in Sanergy, and their exit marks a resounding conclusion to a successful partnership and offers further proof in the power of impact investing ...
West Africa Trade & Investment Hub Co-Invests with Cordaid
January, 27 2021
West Africa - DFC’s $14.75m loan portfolio guarantee provides a credit enhancement behind the Trade Hub’s grant to attract investment into Cordaid Investment Management’s fund ...
Regional MSME Investment Fund for Sub-Saharan Africa (REGMIFA) Raises $24m from BMZ via KfW
January, 26 2021
Sub-Saharan Africa - The investment, which BMZ issued through Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW), a government-backed development bank in Germany, is earmarked for the nine of REGMIFA’s target countries that participate in the G20 Compact with Africa. ...
EIB, Jaida Loans Morocco € 10 Mln to Support Microcredit Activity
January, 26 2021
Morocco - The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the financing company of microfinance organizations Jaida have announced the signing of a loan agreement for an amount of 10 million euros (over 108 mln MAD) to support income-generating microcredit activities in Morocco ...
Egypt Using Development Finance to Boost Private Sector
January, 26 2021
Egypt - Egypt will push development financing as a way to expand private sector engagement, leveraging support obtained during the coronavirus pandemic, with a focus on green projects and sustainable growth, the international cooperation minister said ...
IFAD Launches $500m Fund to Channel Climate Finance to Smallholders
January, 25 2021
Global - The International Fund for Agricultural Development is launching a new climate adaptation fund that the organization expects to be the largest of its kind specifically targeting smallholder farmers ...
IFC Invests in Capital Fund to Support SMEs in Central America, Boost Economic Resilience in the Region
January, 25 2021
Central America - Administered by Lafise Investment Management, the $15 million funding will enable CASEIF IV to provide capital to about a dozen firms in the agribusiness, food and beverage, manufacturing and telecommunications sectors. ...
Microfinance Boutique Launches Fund Focused on Silk Road Markets
January, 22 2021
Asia - Luxembourg-based microfinance boutique Mikro Kapital has launched a fund tapping financing of developed and emerging markets along the Silk Road. The Mikro Kapital fund A will focus on micro-credit and micro-leasing for SMEs. ...
New Initiative to Help Banks in the Philippines, Mexico and Egypt Scale Climate Finance
January, 22 2021
Global - The initiative is designed to increase climate lending by participating banks to 30% of their portfolios by 2030, while reducing exposure to coal ...
Lendahand Agrees to 5 Million Euro Debt Facility for Funding Societies to Support Under-Served SMEs in Southeast Asia
January, 21 2021
Southeast Asia - Lendahand, a Dutch-based crowdfunding platform for SMEs in emerging markets, has agreed to provide Singapore-based Funding Societies with up to 5 million euros to invest in underserved SMEs, predominantly in Indonesia, but also including Singapore and Malaysia. ...
AfDB, EIB Seal Deal to Enhance Africa’s Development
January, 21 2021
Africa - The joint action plan enables both institutions to grow a shared pipeline of bankable projects around key complementary themes to which each institution would bring their comparative advantage ...
West Africa: Finnfund and Norfund Increase Funding to Starsight
January, 21 2021
West Africa - Finnfund and Norfund have increased their senior debt facility from $10m to $20m to Starsight, a C&I solar player in West Africa ...
This New Approach to Credit Scoring Is Accelerating Financial Inclusion in Emerging Economies
January, 20 2021
Global - The new scoring (ACS) works with artificial intelligence and social media, instead of paper-based scoring methods that depend on consumers having a bank account ...
Ugandan Startup Raises Funding from French Impact Fund to Expand Operations
January, 20 2021
Uganda - Innovex, a Uganda-grown startup enabling pay-as-you-go and remote monitoring for solar companies, closed an equity investment from Gaia Impact Fund to expand its operations ...
Prosus Ventures Leads $30 Million Investment in Indian Agritech Startup Dehaat
January, 19 2021
India - Prosus Ventures led Patna and Gurgaon-based startup’s Series C financing round. RTP Global and existing investors Sequoia Capital India, FMO, Omnivore and AgFunder also participated, bringing the startup’s to-date raise to over $46 million ...
IFC Says Green Recovery Could Drive $2.5tn Renewables Market This Decade
January, 19 2021
Global - The private-sector arm of the World Bank, which claims to leverage $3 of its own capital and $8 from third parties for every dollar invested in its blended finance funds, has attempted to quantify what devoting Covid recovery funds to green investment would mean for emerging economies ...
Kenya's Co-op Bank Gets $75m for Lending to MSMEs
January, 19 2021
Kenya - The Co-operative Bank of Kenya has secured $75 million long-term funding from the International Finance Corporation (IFC) for onward lending to the micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) ...
India: Microfinance Lenders in Assam Brace for More Pain Amid Loan Waiver Talks
January, 19 2021
India - Assam has seen a drop in collection efficiency of lenders amid talks of a loan waiver by political parties and a new microfinance bill being approved by the state, adding to concerns of worsening asset quality in the industry ...
S. Saxena, MFIN, India: From Response to Recovery - How COVID-19 Crisis Spurred Turnaround of Microfinance Industry
January, 19 2021
India - The pandemic-led crisis has accelerated an overdue transition to digitalisation in business processes and enhanced efforts to address slow-burning issues such as liquidity management, cash, diversification, and capital ...
EU Rules Promise to Reshape Opaque World of Sustainable Investment
January, 17 2021
Europe - Landmark regulations will force asset managers to up their game on ESG but data gaps may hinder progress ...
Latinia Invests in Fintech Company Ábaco to Boost Financial Inclusion in the Region
January, 15 2021
Colombia - Latinia, a software vendor specializing in real-time event processing for financial institutions has recently announced its investment in the SaaS fintech company Ábaco, which operates in Colombia and Mexico and provides financial access to unbanked individuals. ...
IDB Invest Promotes Financial Inclusion in Colombia through Alphacapital
January, 15 2021
Colombia - IDB Invest, a member of the IDB Group, provided a loan to AlphaCapital S.A.S. (AlphaCredit) for an amount in Colombian pesos equivalent to $40 million. ...
K. Set Lin, Gojo & Co.: Building a Credit Scorecard in Myanmar
January, 15 2021
Myanmar - Financial institutions in Myanmar are currently working on overcoming the challenges of building a statistical scorecard and transitioning from expert scorecards, as there is a whole world of new opportunities if the transition is successful ...
Impact Investors Getting Savvier, More Efficient – Report
January, 14 2021
Global - Impact investors are getting more sophisticated and efficient as they make performance and capital allocation decisions, according to a report released Thursday by the Global Impact Investing Network ...
Developed and Developing Financial Markets Are More Similar Than You Think. Here's Why
January, 14 2021
Global - The COVID-19 crisis is an opportunity to reorient how we serve the financially underserved. The challenges for developed and developing countries are more similar than we think ...
West Africa: Daystar Power Secures $38 Million Series B Investment Led by IFU
January, 13 2021
West Africa - The investment will allow West Africa’s fastest growing C&I solar provider to accelerate its regional expansion ...
Sri Lanka: IFC’s $25Mn Investment in NTB to Help Businesses Continue Operations Amid COVID-19
January, 12 2021
Sri Lanka - In an effort to provide improved access to critical working capital for Sri Lankan businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and to help preserve jobs, IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is providing a $25 million loan to Nations Trust Bank (NTB) ...
AfDB Pledges $6.5b for Africa's Great Green Wall
January, 12 2021
Africa - The African Development Bank (AfDB) has pledged to mobilize $6.5 billion in support of Africa's Great Green Wall, a flagship initiative led by the African Union to combat increasing desertification in the region, it said in a statement ...
World Leaders Call for Concerted Action on Biodiversity, Climate Change
January, 12 2021
Global - Pandemic recovery is mankind's chance to change course with smart policies and the right investments. Biodiversity innovations in energy and transport can lead to sustainable recovery and economic and social transformation, said Guterres ...
Thailand: Making Palm Oil More Sustainable
January, 11 2021
Thailand - "Mobilising investments in knowledge and microfinance capacity for oil palm smallholders to shift toward sustainable palm oil production is essential for improving local livelihoods and the global food supply while reducing the climate and environmental impact," said Matthias Bickel, director of the Agriculture and Food Cluster at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH ...
India: Samunnati Raises EUR 10 Mn as Debt to Provide Loans to SME Agri-Businesses & FPOs
January, 11 2021
India - Samunnati said in a statement it has raised EUR 10 million from FMO-Entrepreneurial Bank as well as Triodos Fair Share Fund and Triodos Micorfinance Funds, the two financial inclusion funds managed by Triodos Investment Management (Triodos IM) ...
CropIn Raises US$20 Million in Series C Funding Round Led by ABC World Asia to Advance the Reach of Its Farm Management and Predictive Analytics Solutions
January, 11 2021
Global - CropIn, a leading global artificial intelligence and data-led agri-tech organization empowering stakeholders to reimagine agriculture with data, has raised US$20 million in a Series C funding round led by ABC World Asia, an Asia-focused private equity fund dedicated to evidence-based impact investing ...
Africa's Leap to Clean Energy Seen Needing Policy Change, Investment
January, 11 2021
Africa - Drastic policy change and investment will also be needed if the notion of Africa “leapfrogging to renewables” is plausible, according to the authors of a new study by the University of Oxford, published in the academic journal Nature Energy ...
R. Hossain and T. Tasnim, ICCCAD: Bangladesh - Microfinance in Climate Action: Why Not?
January, 10 2021
Bangladesh - With the impacts of climate change rapidly intensifying and Bangladesh determined to continue its upward trajectory towards socioeconomic development, there is now a crucial need to explore financial mechanisms that are effective in supporting the adaptation needs of the poorest and most vulnerable. Microfinance promises significant potential in this regard. ...
Regulatory Innovation Advances in the Face of COVID-19
January, 08 2021
Global - While Covid-19 may have wreaked havoc across financial services, according to a recent report the pandemic has driven the urgency to prioritise and actively deploy fintech initiatives by regulators. ...
Global Blockchain Business Council: Latin America and the Caribbean - Empowering Women and Girls through Blockchain
January, 08 2021
Latin America & the Caribbean - Technology can be a tremendous equalizer — leveling the playing field in areas that have been historically dominated by one demographic or another. Several promising solutions suggest a future for the LAC region where women and girls are empowered to succeed through new technological solutions ...
Morocco: EBRD and GCF Provide €10m for Green Projects by SMEs
January, 07 2021
Morocco - Through its Maghrebail subsidiary, Bank of Africa will use the funds to finance green projects carried out by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Morocco ...
J. Singh, INSEAD: The Three Dimensions of Social Impact
January, 07 2021
Global - Why do impact ventures often get tempted to prioritise scale over depth? Sometimes it is a business decision, as size is often correlated with financial sustainability. But often the decision is made as scale is just more visible, while measuring depth is hard. Pressure from donors and investors exacerbates the issue ...
Solar among the Options as Moldova Gets €5m Credit Line
January, 06 2021
Moldova - The loan will be supplied by the EBRD and includes €1.25 million of concessional lending provided by the global Green Climate Fund ...
Global Climate Action Needs Trusted Finance Data
January, 06 2021
Global - An agreed system for measuring funding of green projects in poorer nations will be vital to achieving action on climate change in 2021 ...
India: Shivalik Small Finance Bank Receives Commercial Banking License
January, 06 2021
India - This marks the successful completion of the last major step in the transition of Shivalik Mercantile Co-operative Bank (SMCB) to a SFB. SMCB is the first Urban Cooperative Bank (UCB) in India to transition to a Small Finance Bank under the voluntary transition scheme ...
A. Mari: Brazil’s Gerando Falcões Aims to Eradicate Poverty with Smart Slums
January, 06 2021
Brazil - Highlights of the initiative will include sustainable, connected housing to replace the existing shacks, training for adults of all ages for the digital economy and women empowerment through entrepreneurship and microfinance. ...
N. Chehade, CGPA: Harnessing Fintech in the Arab World - An Opportunity Worth Billions
January, 05 2021
MENA - Two-third of adults in the Arab world do not have a formal account. Closing the gap would benefit millions of low-income people and small businesses, and new research by CGAP suggests that fintechs in the region could generate billions in revenue by serving these excluded customers ...
Saudi Arabia Awards License for First Consumer Micro-Loan Provider
January, 05 2021
Saudi Arabia - The launch makes Tamam the first organization in the Kingdom and the region to be licensed by a regulator to offer consumer micro-loans via a mobile app ...
South Africa: IFC Extends $200m Loan to Nedbank to Increase Renewable Energy Financing
January, 04 2021
South Africa - The IFC will provide Nedbank with a loan of up to $200-million to help it expand its green finance operations and grow its climate portfolio by funding renewable energy projects ...
A Quarter of the World Lives in 'Societal Poverty' - Here's What That Means
January, 04 2021
Global - Although there are differences in the levels of societal poverty across regions, the trends look similar to those seen for extreme poverty ...
EBRD Lending 3.5 Mln Euro to N. Macedonia's Procredit Bank for SMEs, Energy Efficiency
January, 04 2021
North Macedonia - The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said on Monday that it is extending two loans worth a total of 3.5 million euro ($4.3 million) to North Macedonia's Procredit Bank in support of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and energy efficiency improvements of residential buildings ...
G. Bull, CEO, CGAP: All Humanity Can Benefit from the Digitisation of Finance
January, 04 2021
Global - The financial sector has provided a lifeline for the poor during the crisis, but it has an equally important role to play in the recovery. The challenge will be to build on the advances we have made so far in financial services delivery in a way that creates a more equitable financial sector for all going forward ...
Jamaica: Blue Mahoe Capital Acquires 40% Stake in Sprint Financial
January, 03 2021
Jamaica - Miami-based investment firm Blue Mahoe Capital Partners Inc has signed an agreement to acquire a 40 per cent equity stake in Jamaica-based microfinance company Sprint Financial Services Ltd (SFS) ...
IFAD to Support Rebuilding Bangladesh's Microenterprises
January, 01 2021
Bangladesh - The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) will provide Bangladesh with an additional loan of US$ 18.07 million to rebuild microenterprises as well as to support smallholders affected adversely by the Covid-19 pandemic ...
Y. Fanusie: Stop Saying You Want to Bank the Unbanked
January, 01 2021
Global - With rising public and private attention on digital currencies, either in the context of decentralized protocols or central banks, the strategy of banking the unbanked through financial technology deserves more scrutiny. ...

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