Category Archives: Featured

If you’ve been looking for a microfinance platform focusing on women and girls, today is your lucky day! A new website called Catapult combines crowdfunding and microfinance to help women and girls around the world.  Launched at the Clinton Global Initiative, Catapult features a wide range of projects from child brides to family planning to education.  The site goes beyond traditional business microfinance to help the needs of women and … Read More >>

Head of Microfinance for BNP Paribas

Emmanuel De Lutzel, Head of Microfinance for BNP Paribas, sat down for an interview with Microfinance Focus to discuss the developments in the microfinance industry.  BNP Paribas now has invested over 150 million euros in this industry.  De Lutzel believes the industry is reconstructing itself and coming back to the “fundamentals” after struggling a bit over the last few years.  Additionally, he sees microfinance focusing more on livelihood finance, including … Read More >>

Using Music to Make a Difference

Whole Planet Foundation has started an initiative called Musicians for Microfinance as a way to engage the music community and its fans in awareness raising and fundraising.  The program features digital album and track downloads, in-store performances, and benefit concerts to help empower women around the world to change their own lives. To date, the Musicians for Microfinance program has raised 6784 dollars, impacting the lives of 245 people.  In … Read More >>

Bahrain is starting to focus more attention on social businesses in their country.  The Family Bank in partnership with the Economic Development Board, Ministry of Social Development, Tamkeen, the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the Bahrain Development Bank organized the first Bahrain Social Business Week earlier this year in September. Muhammad Yunus, founder of the Grameen Bank, was one of the speakers participating in the four-day event.  Professor … Read More >>

With the devestation that hurricane Sandy has caused all along the east coast, many peope’s homes, jobs, business are wiped out.  I’m sure there will be lots of aid coming their way, but how much of it will the individuals have to rebuild themselves?  With projections of $50 billion in damages and millions of insurance claims, I can’t imagine that people will have money for necessities, let alone rebuilding their … Read More >>

Want to see first hand how microfinance impacts lives? Opportunity International provides insight trips to do just that.  Insight Trip participants meet Opportunity clients, attend Trust Group meetings, exchange knowledge with local loan officers, and share insights with Opportunity staff and their fellow travelers.   Opportunity has upcoming trips to the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Colombia, India, Uganda, the Philippines, Rwanda, Kenya, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, and Ghana.  This is a … Read More >>

Habitat for Humanity has entered into another partnership to support microfinance, this time with the Citi Foundation.  The two organizations announced the publication of a new toolkit to encourage microfinance institutions to include or enhance housing microfinance products in their portfolios.  The end goal of the Housing Microfinance: Product Development Toolkit is to provide small, affordable loans that low-income families can use to improve their housing.  The toolkit is available … Read More >>

  Indonesia is the newest country to dedicate itself to reducing poverty through microfinance.  The country’s president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said that microfinance is an effective way to reduce poverty, unemployment, and create more jobs at the 2012 International Microfinance Convention. This two-day conference was hosted by Indonesia’s Ministry of Cooperatives and Small Medium Enterprises, and featured 420 participants from twenty-three countries. The president stressed the importance of helping lower income people … Read More >>

CGAP 2012 Photo Contest Winners!

For the past 7 years, CGAP has had its annual photo contest which always brings in amazing pictures from all around the world.  This years competition started in June and CGAP has finally chosen it’s winner! Yavuz Sariyildiz of Turkey is this years winner of over 2,500 photos that were submitted: Even though Yavuz was the winner, there were a lot of great pictures.  Here are a few more: (the … Read More >>

MicroRate has just released their seventh annual survey and analysis of the state of microfinance investment.  The study finds that microfinance investment vehicles (MIVs) have settled into a lower level of growth after the global financial crisis, with total asset growth at eleven percent.  In 2010, the total asset growth was twelve percent, and it is forecasted to be fourteen percent in 2014.  The microfinance investment market is moving towards … Read More >>