FSD News

 
FSD News

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    • 31 July 2018
      State of the Smallholder Finance

      Learn the newest developments, challenges and trends in the smallholder finance sector. Root Capital and other members of the Council on Smallholder Agricultural Finance (CSAF) hosted a webinar, as well as published an annual report. 

      Find everything on this website. 

    • 16 March 2018
      Videos of the webinars on Local Economic Development in the SDC
      From 13 to 22 March, the e+i and DDLG Networks jointly hosted an e-consultation on Local Economic Development (LED). After three webinars in English, French and Spanish, Maja Rüegg und Marcus Jenal facilitated an e-discussion. The videos of the webinars are now published on the e+i Shareweb, a synthesis paper of the e-discussion will follow soon... [more on the PSD eDiscussion page]
    • 16 March 2018
      Kick-off event: E-Talk series on youth employment promotion
      40 participants at the SDC HQ in Bern and many more connected through live-streaming attended the Youth Employment Kick-off event on 15 March with presentations by Matthias Herr, Stefan Butscher and Roman Troxler. Four eTalks are planned in the coming months. All potential participants are invited to suggest further topics.... [more]
    • 16 March 2018
      Job Offer: SHA-Secondment Asian Development Bank - Disaster Risk Financing Consultant Pakistan

      The Divison Europe, Asia and Americas of the Humanitarian Aid of SDC is looking for a specialist in Disaster Risk Financing. The most important points are: Experience with disaster risk financing required, Duty station: Islamabad - Pakistan, Swiss or EU nationals can apply only. 

      See the detailed job description here. 

      Contact person for more information:

      Lotti Roth
      Field Ressources H
      lotti.roth@eda.admin.ch

      Outputs

      1. Inception Report covering;
      a) Road map and timeline for preparation of DRF strategy, development of instruments and
      deployment of one instrument on pilot basis.
      b) Revised ToRs for disaster risk financing consultants/firms, as relevant
      c) Initial scoping exercise capturing DRF activities completed, underway and planned by other
      stakeholders.
      d) Preliminary schedule of knowledge events (workshops) and related actions to support the
      establishment of an insurance culture in the country.

      2. Mid Term Progress Report covering;
      a) Review of DRF activities and implementation status progress under the NDRMF and
      contribution to wider efforts to strengthen the financial management of disaster risk in Pakistan.
      b) Legal framework of DRF in Pakistan, gap assessment and recommendations for improvement
      c) Revised road map, if required.
      d) Draft guidelines on post-disaster budget execution.

      3. Final Report covering;
      a) Detailed review of DRF progress and achievements, including related challenges and
      opportunities for further advancement.
      b) Recommendations, including road map, for the design and deployment of further DRF
      instruments and any additional DRF needs in support of the enhanced financial management
      of disaster risk in Pakistan.
      c) Final guidelines on post-disaster budget execution.

      Qualifications
      Education Requirements and Experience
      I. Master's degree in Insurance, Risk Management, Actuarial Sciences, Economics Management,
      ACII /FCII, Finance, Accounting, Statistics, Spatial Econometrics or other relevant fields of study
      with specific experience of risk insurance and re-insurance.
      II. The competent candidate should have a general experience of about 12-15years.
      III. The candidate should have to demonstrate proven relevant experience of about 8-10 years
      relevant to the assignment especially experience in the insurance, re-insurance sector,
      preferably in a large re-insurance companies e.g. Munich Re Swiss, Re or any other.
      IV. Must having track record of disaster related fiscal risk and the design of disaster risk financing
      solutions.
      V. Past experience of implementing similar projects in Asian countries and good understanding of
      disaster risk financing in Pakistan, would be an advantage.

      Start and duration
      As soon as possible for 1 year (extendable)
      Duty Station: Islamabad, Pakistan

    • 14 March 2018
      SCBF end-November 2017 to end-February 2018

      Approved Projects

      E-Saving club Akiba Mexico

      The aim of this project is to digitalise the loan origination process of the partner financial institutions Pretmex and offer Akiba´s own digital MicroCreditLine product (MCL). Online lending is a relatively new concept in Mexico with only few providers covering mainly the consumer lending sector and at usury rates. The MCL product specifically targets the funding need of low-income employees who often have to borrow at very high costs and unreasonable conditions when facing short-term financial emergencies. >> more


      J.Wipf  Guardian Life Insurance Limited (GLIL) Bangladesh

      The SCBF support of one year is meant to enhance the partners´ GLIL and BRAC capacities to develop and develop microinsurance products, one preferably with savings-linked component, offered to one or more segments of BRAC´s diverse and vast membership (it has the largest microfinance programme in the world). >> more


      WWB Lead Foundation Egypt (automation)

      The main objective of the project is to transform Lead´s microinsurance operations to make them digital and automated, through the design and development of a fraud robot able to detect fraudulent insurance pay-out claims. Upon project completion, the insurance process automation solution should enable Lead to expand its client base from currently 180,000 to 318,000 clients in 2019 and manage high scale operations without adding more staff. >> more


      WWB Lead Foundation Egypt (family)

      Lead Foundation aims to develop at least one family health insurance product and roll it out to its currently over 200,000 clients and their families, expanding its beneficiary base to 950,000 by end of 2019, and thus enhancing their resilience in face of unexpected health crises and hospital emergencies. >> more


      Venture South Biashara na Fedha Tanzania

      Biashara na Fedha and Simusolar aim to develop, test and scale up customised loan products designed to finance the acquisition of solar-powered water pumps by smallholder farmers around Lake Victoria, reaching out to 1,000 farmers by 8.2019, and intending to reach 17,000 farmers three years after the support. The customisation will take into account the crop cycles and smallholder farmer credit profiles. >> more


      Symbiotics MicroCred DRC

      The purpose of the product up-scaling support is to upgrade the existing loan products of MicroCred, esp. the roll-out of the local currency loan product in Congolese Francs (CDF). Secondly, the support will be focused on developing and launching deposit products, and providing to clients financial education on the spectrum of services (savings and loans). This is expected to lead to outreach of 7,500 CDF clients (2,000 new) and 17,000 deposit clients by end of 2018.          >> more


      Habitat Banco Solidario Ecuador

      Banco Solidario plans to redesign its existing housing microfinance product and adjust mobile tools to support credit officers in selling the products, improving the living conditions of at least 1,794 clients and their families at project end and 4,000 clients by December 2021. The technical assistance will also trigger a capital investment of USD 11 mil. for home improvements. >> more


      Habitat COAC JA Ecuador

      COAC JA (Calculadora de Ahorro y Credito – Jardin Azuayo) aims to redesign its existing housing microfinance product and introduce a new micro-mortgage product, improving the living conditions of at least 2,000 / 500 clients and their families with the housing microloan and mortgage product (respectively) at project end and 6,000 / 1,200 clients by December 2021. Upon project completion, app. USD 8 mil. capital for home improvements will be mobilised. >> more


      Habitat LOMC Sri Lanka

      With this technical assistance LOMC Sri Lanka aims to expand its housing portfolio by reaching out to new customer segments and build the capacity of product management within the institution. It is expected that by end of the project, 7,200 clients with families will have access to improved financial products and services for home improvement and app. USD 14 mil. will be invested in home improvements. >> more


      Habitat LOLC Cambodia

      Over 18-month period LOLC intends to introduce a new micro mortgage product and grow and manage its housing portfolio by gaining inputs on product level strategy and product management principles. Upon project completion, 2,520 families/clients will have access to improved financial products and services for home improvements/construction and approximately USD 8.4 mil. capital will be invested in home improvements. >> more


      BFC NUCAFE Uganda

      NUCAFE is a coffee farmer organization with a total of 200 member organizations, which translates into over 1 million individual coffee farmers. This financial education campaign is designed to raise awareness and understanding of agricultural insurance (Relative Evapotranspiration Index Drought Insurance) for smallholder farmers and their general financial education to improve their financial capacities and change their attitude towards formal financial services. By project end, 70,000 smallholder coffee farmers (including 17,000 young farmers and 17,000 female farmers) will be able to better manage business activities as well as understand the importance of savings and risk management tools (including agricultural insurance). >> more


    • 14 March 2018
      SCBF end-November 2017 to end-February 2018

      Completed Projects


      WWB Al Amana Morocco

      Al Amana redesigned and rebranded its existing health insurance product to “Tayssir Al Amana” and developed a strong marketing campaign leading to an increase in uptake and usage of the product. That, in concert with the supportive management systems for product monitoring and evaluation resulted in a substantial growth of Al Amana´s microinsurance portfolio from 2013 through 2016. >> more



      “Rkia, client of Al Amana in Morocco, who makes her living through embroidery and sewing“
      ©Courtesy of Al Amana

      Positive Planet  Al Barid Bank  Morocco

      Al Barid Bank intended to develop a new payment agent network to deliver social benefits (G2P – government to people) to rural areas in Morocco through adapting its existing mobile banking platform (developed with the SCBF support 2013-01). However, this switch from cash-based to mobile-based distribution system was thwarted by changes in regulatory framework. >> more


      Alliance Myanmar

      Alliance for Microfinance and Myanmar successfully developed, piloted and rolled out a successful Small Enterprise loan product, leading to an uptake of 10,713 loans by project end and aiding the successful development of the institution in the past two years. The SE loans now comprise 41% of the total loan portfolio and yielded 40% income for AMFIM in 2017. >> more

      Alliance Myanmar

      AMFIM succeeded in designing a system where financial education is an integrated part of its business model and does not depend on the access to external funding after the initial phase of development. AMFIN adapted the content of the programme to serve the varying needs of its group loan clients and small enterprise loan clients. At project end, all group loan clients (over 45,000) have been trained with the presentation guide and at least 20,000 clients have watched the video at disbursement. For small enterprise loans, at least 1,500 clients have watched the disbursement video and 225 took part in one or more financial education training sessions. >> more

      KiWi Mexico

      As part of the financial education campaign, KiWi Mexico designed a variety of tools and materials, such as user manuals, videos on YouTube, FAQ, and new scripts explaining how the digital platform for micro-merchants works (see reference to 2016-01) and how it contributes to better financial control, credit-worthiness and sales. >> more



      “Rkia, client of Al Amana in Morocco, who makes her living through embroidery and sewing“
      ©Courtesy of Al Amana



    • 12 January 2018
      Article on Weather Index Insurance

      Weather index insurance has often been hailed as a blessing for smallholder farmers to cope with climate shocks. These expectations were overblown. Generally, farmers’ uptake of index insurance remains low. But this does not mean that there is no potential. Research from Kenya shows that better tailoring index insurance to smallholder conditions could increase uptake with significantly positive effects for agricultural development.

      You can read the full article here.

    • 07 December 2017
      2017 Symbiotics MIV Survey

      2017 Symbiotics MIV Survey

      The 2017 Symbiotics MIV survey is now available. The survey, which is done on an annual basis, provides comprehensive market trends and peer group analysis on microfinance off-shore investments.

      This is the second year that SPTF has partnered with Symbiotics to add questions to the MIV survey that look at how MIVs incorporate various aspects of social performance into their activities. The questions cover policies, tools, and initiatives related to the work of the SPTF and its Social Investor Working Group in the pursuit of ensuring responsible investment in inclusive finance.
    • 06 December 2017
      20th anniversary of our Savings and Credit Forum

      This autumn we had the chance to have an inspiring and insightful Savings and Credit Forum on "Why and how formal savings services matter to low-income and vulnerable households"! We were lucky to celebrate the 20th anniversary of this unique event series for continuous learning, exchange and networking. Nathalie Wyser took the opportunity to give a very special thanks to Ruth Egger who had initiated the Forum and had guided it very wisely during many years, still being involved with helping to make this one on "Savings Services" outstanding again.  




      from left to right:
      Alexandre Berthaud (E-Savings), Peter Beez (FP e+i), Ruth Egger (formerly Intercooperation, now Board member HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation), Nathalie Wyser (FP e+i), Graham Wright (MicroSave).


      Did you get curious about our long history of Savings and Credit Fora? Find out more


    • 04 December 2017
      New feature to easily share the results of your work!

      Our brand new tool allows you to share your news and documents within seconds with the whole e+i community. No matter if you want to announce a job opening, a call for tenders or the start of a new project: it will just take few clicks to publish it on our Shareweb. Go directly to the tool or a look a the tutorial below:

       
    • 01 December 2017
      SCBF mid-August to end of November 2017

      Approved projects: 


      Advans Ghana

      This intervention will enable Advans Ghana to conduct a post pilot review of the rural expansion done so far and based on the conclusions of the review roll-out the rural services (loans and savings) through alternative delivery channels (mobile solutions, mobile money, point of sales and agri-value chains). By April 2019, it is expected that at least 10,000 rural clients (3,300 borrowers) will be served and a rural portfolio (micro & SME) will represent 22% of the total loan portfolio. >>more 

      Zingsure Malawi

      Zingsure will build up the local human resources (2,700 members as agents) to assist the Muslim Association of Malawi to register its members and to collect monthly premium contributions from them. Upon project completion, Zingsure should be in a position to provide initial life insurance group scheme cover to 1 million members in Malawi. >>more


      Advans Tunisie
      Advans Tunisie aims to expand its outreach and impact in rural areas via the expansion / launch of two types of lending services: 1) rural lending through alternative delivery channels, and 2) agri-lending with farmer and value chain centric approach. It aims to reach 500 rural and 113 agricultural clients by project end, representing 5% of the lending portfolio, and over 3,000 such new clients by 2020. >>more 

      Financiera Fundeser  Nicaragua 
      The objective is to promote an appropriate financial product for access to low-pressure irrigation technologies to modernise agricultural methods and increase income of small producers in Nicaragua, reaching 140 credit placements by end of pilot, and 5,000 three years thereafter. >>more 

      Sèvis Finansye Fonkoze  Haiti

      The overall goal of this intervention is to sustainably scale up SFF´s individual small business loan product, with loans ranging from HTG 45,000 to HTG 6 mil., from current 4,718 to 13,532 clients by 2020. To accomplish this, it is essential for SFF to review the operations of the current product, to identify the critical weaknesses, staff capacity and design, and to identify several options for the product going forward. >>more

      Zingsure Zambia
      To start its greenfield insurance operations in Zambia, Zingsure will build up the local human resources of three affinity groups to register their members and to collect quarterly membership fees from their members incl. the distribution of membership cards with the Zingsure embedded insurance offering. Upon project completion, Zingsure should be in a position to provide initial life insurance group scheme cover to 1 million members in Zambia. >>more

      Zingsure Zimbabwe 

      The aim of this financial education campaign is to build and train the needed local human resources in Zimbabwe (133 financial education consultants, 367 micro entrepreneur agents, and 117 assessors) who will act as the focal point to provide information on insurance and financial services on an ongoing basis to the millions of members of large faith-based affinity groups and their extended family. >>more 




    • 01 December 2017
      SCBF mid-August to end of November 2017

      Completed projects:

      E-Tontine La Poste du Benin

      The goal of the intervention was to use technology to increase formal micro-savings at La Poste du Benin by digitising and building bridges with traditional savings practices known as ‘tontines’. Over the short duration of the project 6,680 savings accounts were opened. The project was prematurely closed due to UNCDF intervening with a promise of substantial donor funding to piggy-back on this innovative, high-potential market entry of E-Savings.club. As a result, La Poste´s commitment to E-Savings.club weakened, leading to its crowding out from the market. >> more 


      "

      “The first client of E-tontine (lady to far left) at La Poste du Benin. She is a travelling market trader who does not have enough money to own a stall, and therefore moves around the market selling glasses and small electric appliances. She started her E-tontine with FCFA 500 as she was eager to find a place to save.” ©Courtesy of E-Savings.club


      Syngenta  ACRE Africa  Tanzania

      ACRE Africa (formerly Kilimo Salama) developed a financial education strategy on how to reach smallholder farmers in several agricultural value chains through microfinance institutions, input companies, mobile network operators, and contract growers for agribusinesses. Over 70,000 farmers combined were trained in the Arusha and Iringa regions, with 27,500 taking up insurance within the two years of a related SCBF product up-scaling intervention 2014-01-02. >> more

      “Ms Mwajuma, client of ACRE Africa in Tanzania, assessing the damage on her farm“ ©Courtesy of ACRE Africa
      “The farmers in Tanzania display their insurance certificates” ©Courtesy of ACRE Africa

    • 28 November 2017
      LED? TED? Stocktaking

      The e+i Network is putting together a stocktaking on local economic development (LED) and territorial economic development (TED) initiatives in SDC. If you are engaged in any projects with a local/territorial focus – whether you call them LED/TED or not – please briefly let us know here. Thank you very much!

    • 31 October 2017
      NADEL: Registration for courses in 2018 is open
      For over 20 years, the NADEL Center for Development and Cooperation at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zürich) has been offering specialized courses to professionals working in NGOs, bilateral organizations, international organizations, foundations, and the private sector. Further details about the program can be found here.
    • 12 September 2017
      Satellite technology expedites insurance payouts in India’s crop insurance programme

      Farmers in several districts in Tamil Nadu are receiving payouts because their losses had been identified by satellite data.

      Chennai, (July 19th, 2017) Early insurance payouts were surging during the recent Rabi cropping season in Tamil Nadu, a state in the south of India. For the first time in India, a state government made use of satellite data in assessing various damages and offered compensation to farmers under the prevented sowing feature of the 2.8 bn USD-heavy national crop insurance programme. Under this prevented or failed sowing cover famers received an average pay-out of around 200 EUR if in their village rice could only be sown in less than 25% of the rice growing area because of too little or too much rain.  >> entire press release

    • 11 September 2017
      Project highlights in May to mid-August 2017

      Please read the most interesting brief summaries on the completed projects (Zingsure Zimbabwe and KiWi Morocoo) and the newly approved projects (approved projects: KiWi Mexico, Grameen Crédit Agricole RMCR Mali, Biashara na Fedha Kenya, Habitat FUDEMI & FUNDENUSE Nicaragua, Lead Foundation Egypt). >>here


    • 11 September 2017
      2 new microinsurance specialists join SCBF
      SCBF has had the pleasure to welcome new representatives of 2 current member organisations:
      Martin Hintz (Allianz) previously worked in Jakarta for 7 years where he had grown microinsurance from 0 to 500,000 customers. Since 2011, he has been overseeing 12 active markets in Latin America, Africa and Asia, growing the customer base from 4 mil. to over 50 mil.
      Bilal Mughal (Zurich Insurance Group) recently joined Blue Marble Microinsurance on secondment from Zurich Insurance as a Head of Ventures with responsibility for venture design and operations and brings a plethora of expertise for SCBF. 
      Both Martin and Bilal strongly reinforce SCBF´s expertise in inclusive insurance services. 
    • 11 September 2017
      SCBF General Assembly Meeting at Swiss Re
      On June 27, SCBF held its bi-annual general assembly meeting, with a thematic window on financial education, featuring two panellists: Juan Vega Gonzales (financial education specialists) and Alexandre Berthaud (SCBF vice-chair and in charge of a financial education campaign related to savings in Mexico). Furthermore, the SCBF annual report 2016 was presented. 
    • 11 September 2017
      Five brand new glossaries from the e+i Focal Point
      The e+i Focal Point has developed five glossaries with key terms for Private Sector Development (PSD), Financial Sector Development (FSD), Systemic Change (MSD/M4P), Vocational Skills Development (VSD) and Monitoring and Results Measurement (MRM). The documents will help us to understand each other better until we rely completely on intelligent algorithms like the DeepL Translator.
      Below we listed some of the highly used terms in the respective fields. Do you have the same understanding of the terms as we do? Feedback is highly appreciated.

      ​​​​​Do you know what these terms mean in your field?
      Local Ec​​​onomic Development Green Growth Institutions Blended Finance​​Dual VET​
      ​See the PSD glossary.​See the MSD glossary.​See the MRM glossary​.​See the FSD glossary.​See the VSD glossary.




    • 04 September 2017
      S & C Forum: Why and how formal savings services matter to low-income and vulnerable households
      Our next Savings and Credit Forum will take place on Thursday, 28th September 2017 in Berne.
      Low-income households do not only need credit, they also need savings, insurance and money transfer services. Low-income households save. How do they save and what for? What obstacles... >>more
    • 20 July 2017
      Microinsurance solutions to adress climate change

      The 2017 edition of the journal takes a closer look at microinsurance solutions for climate change, focusing on pioneering ideas in the way microinsurance is being designed and offered, and highlighting key lessons learned from a range of different programs and initiatives. 

      It is a pleasure to share The State of Microinsurance 2017 – Microinsurance solutions to address climate change, the third edition of the Microinsurance Network’s Annual Journal with the insights into the microinsurance industry’s latest developments.

      Please draw special attention to the following articles, where three initiatives that SDC supports are presented:

      • P.14: An integrated risk Management Approach against climate risks: the R4 Rural Resilience initiative in Senegal
      • P. 22:Rethinking agricultural insurance: Lessons learnt from the Agriculture and climate Risk Enterprise (ACRE) Africa
      • P.41: Overcoming the challenges in designing natural hazard microinsurance products: a MICRO experience in Central America
      • P.45: Risk reduction and Adaption to climate Change for low-income farmers in India: "Climate Resilience through Risk Transfer" (RES-Risk)

    • 29 June 2017
      Learning Session: When Governments get insured to build their resilience

      Dear all

       

      The e+i Focal Point for Financial Inclusion has the pleasure to invite you to the following learning session:

       

      When Governments get insured to build their resilience

       

      Low-income households and smallholder farmers need insurance: for example health insurance and/or agriculture insurance.

       

      How does it work when Governments get insurance for example for the devastating effects of drought? How is the payout triggered? In the case of an event, how does the payout of the insurance reach the low-income households?

       

      Our colleagues Nadia Benani, Manuel Flury and Frank Bertelsbeck will provide us with valuable insights on two examples of macro insurance solutions and their link to Disaster Risk Management (DRM): the African Risk Capacity (ARC) and the Pandemic Emergency Finance Facility (PEFF), as well as on the work of the Global Facility of Disaster Risk Reduction GFDRR, providing Governments with support to improve their Disaster Risk Management (DRM).

       

      The inputs focus on the organizations, their roles, their mechanisms at work and how they integrate DRM and insurance solutions.

       

      For downloading Manuel Flury’s presentation on the ARC, please click here.

      For downloading Nadia Benani’s presentation on the PEFF, please click here.

      For downloading Frank Bertelsbeck’s presentation on the GFDRR, please click here.  

       

    • 09 June 2017
      Dynamic e-consultation on the revised guidance for managing Market Systems Development (MSD) projects in SDC

      Beginning of April a dynamic e-consultation on the revised guidance for managing MSD projects in SDC has taken place. Network members from SDC as well as implementing agencies have very actively shared their observations on the revised guidance and their experiences and best practices in implementing MSD projects. Their observations have been incorporated into this  restructured, user friendlier and easier accessible document. Find it >>here



    • 23 May 2017
      News from SCBF
      Project highlights in March to May 2017
      Approved Product Upscaling Projects:  Enhancing client value through microinsurance offerings by AMRET in Cambodia and Ekphatthana Microfinance Institution in Laos: Financial education on Credit Life Plus. There are also several projects in the pipeline in Tunisia, Egypt, Bangladesh, Kenya, Nicaragua, Haiti, Zambia, Ivory Coast, Zimbabwe/Malawi, Madagascar and Mali.
      SCBF General Assembly Meeting at SDC on March 2nd
      SCBF held its bi-annual General Assembly meeting on March 2nd at SDC in Bern. The morning session included a thematic window with Marc Tison (MD ZingSure), Jason Perthel (Zing Founder & CEO) and Alex Mion (Zing CTO), with highly relevant presentation on their current and planned activities in Zimbabwe and Malawi. 
      InsureCo 
      SCBF supported ZingSure initiative in setting up an insurance company “InsureCo”, a partnership between ZingSure Limited and the Apostolic Council of Churches of Zimbabwe to increase insurance penetration and stimulate wealth creation. The partnership is in line with financial inclusion vision of the Zimbabwean government as contained in the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (ZimAsset – 2013). 
    • 05 April 2017
      Online course: Do you speak social finance?

      Roots of Impact is excited to announce the launch of their online course Access to Impact Investment for Social Enterprises on May 3rd! It is the first ever FREE online course guiding social entrepreneurs through entire journey of attracting impact investment and registrations are now open. For more information discover the online course experience here.

      What will you gain?

      • A comprehensive, systematic step-by-step framework
      • Valuable tools and knowledge to get investment-ready
      • Insights into the right investor search profile and approach
      • Guidance about the most appropriate financing instruments
      • A wealth of tools, expert views, worksheets and case studies
    • 22 March 2017
      Swiss Microfinance Funds and savings accounts for our beneficiaries

      Listen to our colleagues Rochus Mommartz (responsability) and Annette Kraus (Center for Microfinance, University of Zurich) being interviewed on the issue of Microfinance Funds. The 5 minutes long interview was aired on Swiss National Radio on March 15th 2017. It is in German. Among other highlights of this interesting interview, please don’t lose the moment (at 59 seconds) when Rochus gets all exited about 2017 being the first year ever that Microfinance beneficiaries in India have the possibility to open a savings account at their Microfinance Institutionhere 

    • 13 March 2017
      Savings and Credit Forum on Social Performance

      ​On March 16th we held a Savings and Credit Forum on:

      What are Social Performance Management and Reporting Practices ​of Financial Institutions and Microfinance Impact Investor?​

      please have a look at the different inputs from our colleagues. You can find the programme and the presentations
      >> here.
    • 13 March 2017
      Get your personal support. Free of charge, no administrative work

      It is a highly complex task to design and implement projects in the field of international development cooperation. This is one of the reasons why everyone who works in the field relies on useful resources and regular exchange with peers. Therefore, the Focal Point offers SDC e+i network members expert support for up to 8 hours. Learn more about this service here (we've even produced a short video for you).​​

    • 07 March 2017
      Swiss Capacity Building Facility (SCBF)

      The Swiss Capacity Building Facility (SCBF) is a public-private development partnership dedicated to improving the lives and livelihoods of low-income people and micro-entrepreneurs in developing and emerging economies. It is a grant-making organisation with the objective to promote financial inclusion as a strategy for alleviating poverty.

      SCBF currently unites 19 Switzerland-based member organisations, including SDC as the public partner and core funder. The members greatly contribute through their expertise, ensuring SCBF stays focused and selects high-impact projects for capacity building support. This creates a unique partnership working to help partner financial institutions to enhance their outreach to financially excluded populations, as part of social and economic development work.

      Project highlights in Product upscaling (November 2016 to February 2017)

      KiWi – making fintech work for micromerchants in Mexico: How technology can transform the microfinance industry

      “KiWi card payment solution for micromerchants in Mexico“ ©Courtesy of KiWi
       

       

       

       

       

       

        


      Optimising claims under the PGMF Beneficiary Welfare Programme in Myanmar: “PGMF borrower impacted by a high-wind event.  The loan officer conducting a damage assessment“ (picture to the right) © Courtesy of Stonestep

       There are several projects in the pipeline in Tunisia, Egypt, Bangladesh, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Kenya, Colombia, Nicaragua, Haiti, Zambia, Kenya, Ivory Coast, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

       

       

       

       

       

       

        

      Opportunity International Switzerland joined the SCBF

       SCBF has cordially welcomed Opportunity International Switzerland as a new member, which joined in the second half of 2016. With that, SCBF´s membership base has grown to 19 organisations.

      Opportunity International Switzerland (charitable Swiss foundation) is associated partner of the Opportunity International Network. Since 1971, OI has provided access to loans, savings and insurance to help women grow small businesses; teachers build local schools and smallholder farmers to increase their crop yields. Opportunity is actively serving 12 million hardworking entrepreneurs in 25 countries around the world.

       

    • 06 December 2016
      Overview of Impact Investment in Latin America

      The Aspen Network ofDevelopment Entrepreneurs, Latin American Venture Capital Association & LGTImpact Ventures with the support of other partners, launched in late August theLandscape of Impact Investment in LatinAmerica  with a deep dive in Brazil, Colombia andMexico. 

       

      As part of this broaderproject ANDE shared today an Overview of Impact Investment in Central America

       

      Enjoy! 

    • 28 November 2016
      SCBF

       


        

      The Swiss Capacity Building Facility (SCBF) is a public-private development partnership dedicated to improving the lives and livelihoods of low-income people and micro-entrepreneurs in developing and emerging economies. It is a grant-making organisation with the objective to promote financial inclusion as a strategy for alleviating poverty.

      SCBF currently unites 18 Switzerland-based member organisations, including SDC as the public partner and core funder. The members greatly contribute through their expertise, ensuring SCBF stays focused and selects high-impact projects for capacity building support. This creates a unique partnership working to help partner financial institutions to enhance their outreach to financially excluded populations, as part of social and economic development work.​


      Project highlights in September & October 2016

      Approved projects

      Product up-scaling: Strengthening outreach to rural clients with e-wallets by FINCA Haiti: Integrating disbursements and improving delivery channels structure

       

      Caption for the attached image: “A group of agricultural loan clients in Gros-Morne (Artibonite) in Haiti, about an hour inland from the FINCA branch on a dirt road. These clients repay their loans using mobile money.”

      There are also several projects in the pipeline in Kenya, Colombia, Zambia, Ivory Coast, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.


      Closed projects

      Product up-scaling: CIH Bank in Morocco – Downscaling to target small enterprises.

    • 25 November 2016
      Luca Etter: new member of the Advisory Committee for the Capital Aggregation Learning Lab at ANDE

      Our colleague Luca Etter has recently become member of the Advisory Committee for the CapitalAggregation Learning Lab at ANDE.

      ANDE's Learning Labs, formerly our Working Groups, are neutral convening spaces for diverse practitioners to share best practices and new research, discuss hot topics, andlearn from one another. The Labs can also offer a venue for joint research oraction on key issues.

      About this lap: All ANDE Members have challenges accessing appropriate capital. This learning lab provides a space to capture knowledge ofthe spectrum of available finance along the continuum from grant funding todirect investment. Members include those providing and looking to accesscapital and aims to help differing SGB financing approaches to work together inthe most efficient way possible.

    • 22 November 2016
      Advent, Advent...

      The focal point e+i has a special We+ihnachtszeit treat for you! Every day you get the chance to explore, learn, laugh or just relax until it is Christmas (=We+ihnachten).

      Make sure you don’t miss any stars to be opened and let us know in case you have questions or inputs.

      >> here <<

      Your e+i focalpoint.

    • 31 October 2016
      Register now for the NADEL courses 2017

      NADELs course programme covers a wide range of relevant topis for practitioners in the field of e+i. Besides this, the courses are unique opportunity to engage with other peers, experts, policy makers, and in particular with the Swiss development cooperation community. The course programm, the registration forms, and more information about the admission requirements are available on NADEL's website​. 

      For professionals in the field of VET two courses are  especially ​​recommended:

      Registration for the spring semester 2017 starts on October 31, and for the autumn semester 2017 it starts on May 29, 2017.

    • 30 September 2016
      New Report: ANDE - The State of Impact Investing in Latin America
      The Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), in partnership with the Latin American Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (LAVCA), and LGT Impact Ventures has released a report on the growing landscape of impact investing in Latin America. Impact investing is a relatively nascent industry, and this report aims to fill the data gap in key Latin American markets.

      The report covers trends in regional impact investing with a focus on impact measurement, talent, and gender. It explores fundraising, deals, and exits, and takes a deep dive into impact investing in Brazil, Colombia, and Mexico.

      Click here to find the report in different languages.

    • 30 September 2016
      New Video: Project 'Governancia e Inclusion Financiera'
      Here you can find the new video explaining how the GIF project works.
    • 22 September 2016
      Unlocking Blended Finance for Social Entrepreneurs, Savings and Credit Forum in Bern

      ​This Savi​​​ngs & Credit Forum was organized by SDC in partnership with Ashoka - the largest ​network of social entrepr​eneurs and Obviam, manager of the SIFEM, the Swiss development Finance Institution. We looked at the topic of blended finance (also called hybrid finance by Ashoka) for social entrepreneurs and how to bridge the gap between public sector/ philanthropy and social impactor investors and investees. >> find out more

      ​​​​
    • 22 September 2016
      e+i Shareweb: New, exciting feature – Smartsearch
      Finding relevant documents, project examples and interesting events has now become much easier and faster with the new Smartsearch available on the e+i Shareweb. Discover it here.
    • 16 September 2016
      SDC on Swiss national news: 10vor10

      SDC finances the Enhancing Youth Employment (EYE) project in Kosovo with the aim of increasing the employment opportunities for young women and men who graduate from Vocational Education and Training (VET) schools and universities. EYE helps facilitating their transition from school into the workforce. The project, implemented by HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation and MDA, uses a systemic approach to the labour market and works in the VSD and in the PSD domain. The popular Swiss TV news show “10vor10” has recently broadcasted a 5-minutes clip (in German) about one of the interventions of the project, which collaborates with Kosovar media companies.  >> more

    • 16 September 2016
      Study : Landscape of Microinsurance in Latin America and Caribbean

      Dear colleagues

      It is a pleasure to send you The Landscape Study of Microinsurance in Latin America and the Caribbean – a Changing Market, published the Microinsurance Network and the MunichRe Foundation.

      The study is an update of the one of 2011, hence offers very interesting facts and figures as well as insights in the latest market developments. What are the dynamisms characterizing the market? I would like to share the following summary points:

      • Significant product shifts.

      30 companies launched new products. Microinsurance products that continued since the previous study experienced dramatic but altogether positive shifting. Such significant product shifts are not limited to programs with very little outreach but include those with millions of clients, demonstrating that no program is exempt from assessment and restructuring.

      • Increasing focus on mass markets. -> chapter 3 page 16 on Mass versus Micro

      The region is increasingly focusing on mass markets, with insurers either shifting to the mass market from micro insurance or entering the market focused specifically on the mass market. Mass insurance is addressing a wide ranging client base, micro insurance does address the low-income segment and their protection needs.

      Example of an often repeated conversation between the authors of the study and several seniors insurers:

      Author: Do you offer any microinsurance? Insurer: No, we have insurance for everyone.

      Author: Anything for the low-income market? Insurer: They have access to our mass market products.

      This is a dynamic we will have to further monitor with regards to the benefits and the value for low-income clients.

      • The important role of distribution channels

      It is becoming clear that micro and mass insurance expansion is being driven massively by the availability and motivation of distribution channels. MFIs are no longer the key distribution channel in terms of premiums, with alternative channels (mobile network operators etc.) reaching up to 60% more people per product and exhibiting the greatest expansion since the 2011 study.

      Nathalie Wyser Vizcarra

      Policy Advisor - Financial Inclusion

    • 07 September 2016
      Swiss Capacity Building Facility (SCBF)

       

      ​The SwissCapacity Building Facility (SCBF) is a public-private development partnershipdedicated to improving the lives and livelihoods of low-income people and micro-entrepreneurs in developing and emerging economies. It is a grant-making organisation with the objective to promote financial inclusion as a strategy for alleviating poverty.

      SCBF currently unites 18 Switzerland-based member organisations, including SDC as the public partner and core funder. The members greatly contribute through their expertise, ensuring SCBF stays focused and selects high-impact projects for capacity building support. This creates a unique partnership working to help partner financial institutions to enhance their outreach to financially excluded populations, as part of social and economic development work.

      Project highlights in Q2 & Q3 2016

      Approved projects

       

      Product up-scaling:

      Gender-focused savings-linked insurance for Microfund for Women in Jordan 
      Phone ergonomics for improved uptake of Acre Africa´s mobile microinsurance in Kenya  
      CareGiver insurance roll-out at Lead Foundation in Egypt 
      Expanding outreach of group lending and non-financial services to Syrian women refugees by Microfund for Women in Jordan

      Financial education
      KiWi – digital platform for micromerchants in Mexico

      There are also several projects in the pipeline in Ivory Coast, Haiti, Zambia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.




      Completed projects

      Product up-scaling
      Institutional strengthening to scale up financial intermediation and financial inclusion by Apoyo Integral in Guatemala 
      Access to water and energy through microfinance by PRIDE RFW in Tanzania 
      Access to water and energy through microfinance by Buusaa Gonofaa & Wasasa MFI in Ethiopia 
      Promotion of women-run small businesses by Equity Bank Tanzania: Launch of Fanikisha+ loan product 
      Introduction and up-scaling of microloans for the distribution of biochar stoves by ASA in Ghana

    • 13 July 2016
      save the date! "Unlocking Blended Finance for social entrepreneurs and social businesses": 21 September 2016

      SDC's Employment and Income (e+i) Network invites you to the next Savings & Credit Forum on

       

      Unlocking Blended Finance for social entrepreneurs and social businesses

       

      organized by the SDC in partnership with Ashoka - the largest network of social entrepreneurs - and Obviam, manager of the SIFEM, the Swiss development Finance Institution. The topic is on blended finance (also called hybrid finance by Ashoka) for social entrepreneurs and how to bridge the gap between public sector/philanthropy and social impactor investors and investees.

       

      The conference will gather several speakers among which Markus Freiburg from the Financing Agency for Social Entrepreneurship (FASE) and Björn Strüwer from Roots of Impact who will present the ecosystem of blended finance and the different solutions already existing enabling investors to invest in social entrepreneurs and business. A successful social entrepreneur from the Ashoka network will also join and present how he/she developed a blended business model and how it helped the scaling of its impact. In the afternoon, we will break down in groups to go a step further, and collectively identify how we can each contribute to filling the gap of blended financing.

       

      The conference will take place on 21st September 2016 in Bern, close to SDC headquarters in Ausserholligen.

       

      Further information >>here

      We very much hope to see you in Bern and start the movement of unlocking much needed blended finance for social entrepreneurs and businesses.

    • 28 June 2016
      Swiss Capacity Buildung Facility (SCBF)

       

      The Swiss Capacity Building Facility (SCBF) is a public-private development partnership dedicated to improving the lives and livelihoods of low-income people and micro-entrepreneurs in developing and emerging economies. It is a grant-making organisation with the objective to promote financial inclusion as a strategy for alleviating poverty.

       

      SCBF currently unites 18 Switzerland-based member organisations, including SDC as the public partner and core funder. The members greatly contribute through their expertise, ensuring SCBF stays focused and selects high-impact projects for capacity building support. This creates a unique partnership working to help partner financial institutions to enhance their outreach to financially excluded populations, as part of social and economic development work.

       

      On June 28, SCBF had its general assembly meeting, welcoming two new Swiss members: Venture South and responsAbility. Both joined in the first half of 2016 and reinforce SCBF's expertise in inclusive financial services. Furthermore, the annual report 2015 was presented. With this publication SCBF marks its first step towards reporting consolidated outreach figures. You can expect more on this very soon.

    • 03 May 2016
      the 10 years report on the Index-Based Livetsock Insurance Project is now available

      ​Dear colleagues

      we are happy to share the 10 years report on Index-Based Livestock insurance project (IBLIP).

      Please view it here.

       

       

    • 23 March 2016
      Agriculture Insurance: Forum, 11th May 2016

      ​Our next Savings and Credit Forum will feature 6 case studies from the field that hightlight different aspects of "Progress and Challenges in Inclusive Agriculture Insurance Market Development". We have the privilege to get these Studies presented by experts who will join us from the field. They will introduce us to experiences from Eastern Africa, Bangladesh, Central America, Haiti, and two regional approaches. (read more)

    • 23 March 2016
      Summit on Sustainable Finance

      The programme and the presentations of the 3rd Geneva Summit on Sustainable Finance can be downloaded here. The event took place on 22nd March 2016.

    • 23 March 2016
      S&C Forum

      The Savings and Credit Forum on: Inclusive finance promoting high impact solutions for​ low income populations in rural communities:The PAMIGA model for improved access to water and energy

      was held on March 3, 2016. All the presentations can be downloaded here.

    • 23 March 2016
      News from the Swiss Capacity Building Facility (SCBF)

      The SCBF is SDC’s major public-private development partnership with the Swiss financial sector to promote financial inclusion in the South. Activities under management since inception in 2011: 

      Product Up-scaling interventions: Approved interventions: 56 / Overall volume: CHF 11.80 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 7.00 mio / Self-contribution by partner financial intermediaries and third parties: CHF 4.8 mio (41%)

      Feasibility Studies: Approved studies: 15 / Overall volume: CHF 2.15 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 1.39 mio / Self-contribution by partner financial intermediaries and third parties: CHF 0.76 mio (avg 35%)

      Financial Education Campaigns: Approved campaigns: 9 / Overall volume: CHF 1.92 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 1.13 mio / Self-contribution by partner financial intermediaries and third parties CHF 0.79 mio.  (avg 41%)

       

      Highlights since the last newsletter:

      Myanmar: SME lending
      Mexico: digital payment platform
      Zimbabwe: microinsurance greenfielding
      Myanmar: microinsurance claims optimization
      Mexico: digital ROSCA platform

    • 07 December 2015
      Rethinking Good Practices in Land and Water Management

      ​Why do watersheds matter when it comes to poor people’s livelihoods, their access to water or their protection from disasters and climate change? People living in watersheds know each other, they know their environment and their income depends on the watersheds.     50 development professionals from Latin America and the Caribbean, and from SDC Head Office, comprising five thematic knowledge networks, met for one week in Nicaragua to generate evidence on successful watershed management interventions. Read the 10 key messages at the beginning of the report! They will make a difference in your next project design. (English) >> Síntesis temàtica (Español)
        

    • 30 November 2015
      Access to finance - A micro credit bank supported by SDC is showing promising results
      SDC Mozambique private and financial sector domain aims at improving access to finance. Since 2012, SDC has supported an innovative private public partnership to create a rural green-fielding institution called Microbanco Fides Moçambique SA (MBFM) whose technical assistance is provided by Financial Systems Development Services (FIDES). In this context of the PPDP, Swiss Microfinance Holding (SMH) acted as the private sector investor. MBFM is a formally licensed micro bank under the prudential regulation and supervision of central bank. The partnership between SDC, FIDES and SMH was designed to leverage scarce public resources and to reach 15’000 poor clients that could not be targeted through a standard project. In addition to MBFM, and as part of the project, an Inclusive Finance and Insurance Academy (INFINA) was established to train young Mozambican to staff MBFM. SDC is represented by the COOF at MBFM board of Directors. >> more
    • 27 November 2015
      News from the Swiss Capacity Building Facility (SCBF)

      The SCBF is SDC’s major public-private development partnership with the Swiss financial sector to promote financial inclusion in the South. Activities under management since inception in 2011: 

      Product Up-scaling interventionsApproved interventions: 52 / Overall volume: CHF 10.75 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 6.53 mio / Self-contribution by partner financial intermediaries and third parties: CHF 4.22 mio (39%)

      Feasibility Studies: Approved studies: 15 / Overall volume: CHF 2.17 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 1.42 mio / Self-contribution by partner financial intermediaries and third parties: CHF 0.75 mio (avg 31%)

      Financial Education Campaigns: Approved campaigns: 8 / Overall volume: CHF 1.75 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 0.97 mio (avg 40%)

      Highlights since the last newsletter
      Approval of one product up-scaling intervention in Haiti and feasibility studies in Myanmar and Bangladesh. There are also several projects in the pipeline.


      Completion of six product up-scaling interventions including one in Egypt, Morocco, Nepal, Senegal, Haiti and Peru.


       

    • 03 September 2015
      The SCBF is SDC’s major public-private development partnership with the Swiss financial sector

      The SCBF is SDC’s major public-private development partnership with the Swiss financial sector to promote financial inclusion in the South.
      Activities under management since inception in 2011:


      Product Up-scaling interventions: Approved interventions: 50 / Overall volume: CHF 10.5 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 6.4 mio / Self-contribution by partner financial intermediaries and third parties: CHF 4.2 mio (36%)


      Feasibility Studies: Approved studies: 13 / Overall volume: CHF 1.8 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 1.3 mio / Self-contribution by partner financial intermediaries and third parties: CHF 0.5 mio (30%)


      Financial Education Campaigns: Approved campaigns: 8 / Overall volume: CHF 1.7 mio / Approved SCBF contributions: CHF 1 mio / Self-contribution by partner financial intermediaries and third parties: CHF 0.7 (40%)
      Highlights:

      Completion of product up-scaling interventions in Palestine, Honduras, El Salvador/Honduras, Guatemala and Nepal. Multiple interventions are currently in the pipeline for fall.

      You might also want to have a look at the Annual Report 2014.

    • 29 August 2015
      Cash transfers to address acute malnutrition in emergency contexts

      [by André Dürr, SDC] There are multtiple causes for malnutrition in emergency and transitional contexts. Hence understaing the pre-emergency and emergency-specific causes of malnutrition is essential to plan a sensible intervention. Humanitarian agencies are increasingly using cash transfers to address acute malnutrition. But what does the evidence say?​