Our Staff Writers and Editors offer insights on the latest news, events, interviews and other happenings from the development through enterprise and base of the pyramid universes
Tuesday, September 22, 2015 — Sub-Saharan Africa

The Making of the ‘World’s First Mobile Money Ready’ Accounting System

Source: PC Tech Magazine

It’s web-based nature facilitates access via a wide range of devices, including smartphones and tablets.
Tuesday, July 14, 2015 — South Asia

How Companies Should Respond As Social Business Goes Global

Source: EJ Insight

Social business has been known as a systemically defined business practice for tackling poverty and is blossoming in every corner of the globe including China, the world’s second largest economy.
Thursday, May 14, 2015 — No Region Specified

Press Release: TriLinc Global Impact Fund Makes Impact Investments in Africa and Latin America

Source: Business Wire

TriLinc Global Impact Fund (“TriLinc” or the “Company”) announced today that it has recently approved $3.97 million in trade finance transactions to companies in South Africa and Argentina. The transaction details are summarized below.
Wednesday, May 13, 2015 — No Region Specified

Press Release: Wave Closes $10 Million Investment to Provide Tools for Owners of Small- and Micro-Businesses

Source: Yahoo!

Wave ( has closed a $10 million Series C investment with participation from CRV, The Social+Capital Partnership, OMERS Ventures, and a strategic investor in the global fintech software space. This brings total investment in Wave to $35 million, with the new funds earmarked for ongoing innovation and development of small business financial tools.
Tuesday, May 12, 2015 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Cash Aid Feeds Business Surge in Northern Kenya

Source: Reuters

When the government of Kenya began giving cash instead of food aid to poor people in Kenya's drought-stricken northern region, the aim was to help them buy food more efficiently and conveniently.
Friday, May 8, 2015 — No Region Specified

Are Small Businesses Being Overlooked in the Fight Against Poverty?

Source: The Guardian

When the dust settles on the sustainable development goals, and the world knows exactly what targets will determine climate and development policy for the next 15 years, the hard work of actually implementing them will be left to individual governments.
Tuesday, May 5, 2015 — South Asia

Priority Status for Solar Power Will Aid Smaller Players

Source: GreentechLead

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently revised its priority sector lending (PSL) guidelines. Now medium enterprises, social infrastructure and renewable energy (RE) will form part of priority sector, in addition to the existing categories. This has brought excitement to the stake-holders.
Wednesday, April 29, 2015 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Viewpoint: Nigeria: Microfinance Banks - Helping or Killing SMEs?

Source: allAfrica

To say that the Small, Medium Enterprises is the engine room for economic development is to state the least, especially, in the third world countries, where the degree of unemployment is high and where there are so many qualified applicants chasing few and sometimes not available white collar jobs.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015 — South Asia

IFC Invests in Cambodia’s PRASAC Microfinance Institution Ltd. to Expand Lending for Micro and Smaller Businesses


IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has provided a loan of up to $10 million to PRASAC Microfinance Institution Ltd., Cambodia’s largest organization of its kind, to increase lending to micro, small and medium enterprises in the rural and agricultural sectors.
Tuesday, August 19, 2014 — No Region Specified

Does emergency nutrition cripple local economies?

Source: The Guardian

Providing emergency nutrition in a way that undermines the capacity of local economies to respond to food insecurity and malnutrition themselves seems a clear violation of the 'do-no-harm' principle.
Tuesday, July 29, 2014 — No Region Specified

International Labour Office, World Bank to Enhance Access to Insurance in Africa and Asia

Source: This Day Live

The International Labour Office (ILO) and the World Bank Group (WBG) have signed a memorandum of understanding that aims to provide access to improved insurance products to hundreds of thousands of smallholder farmers, small businesses and individuals in Asia and Africa.
Friday, May 16, 2014 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Small businesses in Kenya embrace mobile money payments

Source: Coastweek

Small business operators in Kenya have for many years resisted mobile money payments as they preferred cash transactions.
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 — Sub-Saharan Africa

SMEs in Developing World Need More Than $2 Trillion, Says International Finance Corporation

Source: allAfrica

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector arm of the World Bank Group has estimated this financial needs of small and medium scale enterprises in Africa and other developing countries.
Tuesday, April 15, 2014 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Musa, Swiss Partner to Help African SMEs in Healthcare

Source: Business Day South Africa

Private equity company Musa Capital is the partner in an investment fund that plans to develop small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) providing health services to the poor in various African countries.
Monday, March 10, 2014 — No Region Specified

Health insurers go for bottom of the pyramid

Source: Standard Digital

It is now possible for low-income earners to flash a smart card when seeking treatment from selected Government hospitals, faith-based health facilities or public health centres. This follows the entry of several underwriters into the low-income medical insurance business.
Tuesday, February 18, 2014 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Kenyan Healthcare Tech Firm Showcased at Sankalp Africa Summit

Source: Human IPO

Kenyan healthcare technologies company MicroClinic Technologies has been named one of the top four high-impact small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Africa at the Sankalp Africa Summit held in Nairobi, Kenya.
Monday, February 3, 2014 — No Region Specified

Govt creating India Inclusive Innovation Fund with initial corpus of $80M

Source: VCCircle

Registered as venture capital entity, it is targeting to take the total investible funds to around $800 million in two years.
Wednesday, January 29, 2014 — No Region Specified

USAID, General Electric to finance health programme in Kenya

Source: Afrique en Ligne

USAID, GE partner with Kenyan bank to finance health programme - The US Agency for International Development (USAID) and General Electric (GE), in conjunction with Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB), Tuesday announced a new partnership that will make up to US$ 10 million in local financing available to small- and medium-enterprises in the country.
Tuesday, January 28, 2014 — Sub-Saharan Africa

GE’s Immelt Urges More Private Investment in Africa Health Care

Source: Business Week

General Electric Co. Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Immelt urged private investors to provide more funding for health care in African nations, where government-run services are overstretched.
Wednesday, October 2, 2013 — No Region Specified

Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs Announces Capacity Development Fund Winners

Source: Press Release

he Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) announced the winners of the fifth round of the ANDE Capacity Development Fund (CDF). Commenced in 2009, the fund seeks to increase the productivity and effectiveness of ANDE members, while creating tools and insights that can help the small and growing business (SGB) sector as a whole. This round awarded six grants totaling $300,000, with each winner receiving $50,000. Total funds disbursed over the past five years now reaches $2.1 million.
Thursday, August 29, 2013 — South Asia

Seminar on Islamic microfinance: SBP stresses upon Islamic finance industry to develop Islamic microfinance

Source: Daily Times

State Bank of Pakistan has stressed upon the Islamic finance industry should take steps to make individual as well as collaborative efforts to develop Islamic microfinance in the country.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013 — No Region Specified

What SMEs Do (and Don't Do) for Jobs

Source: Huffington Post

Across the political spectrum, any leader worth their salt will express support for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) - remember the "job-creator" debate during last year's U.S. presidential elections? Globally, the G20 has prominently made SME support a priority of their development agenda, citing that SMEs account for 45 percent of employment and 33 percent of GDP in developing countries.
Wednesday, December 19, 2012 — No Region Specified

USAID Mobilizes Record Amount of Private Capital to Support Small Businesses in Developing Countries

Source: USAID Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – USAID’s Development Credit Authority (DCA) worked with 45 financial institutions in 23 countries in 2012 to unlock up to $525 million in private capital for underserved entrepreneurs in developing countries. The financing, made available through 34 partial credit guarantees, is the most USAID has mobilized in a single year.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012 — Sub-Saharan Africa

Kenya SMEs Get U.S.$60 Million

Source: All Africa

Nairobi — The World Bank has extended a $60 million loan towards boosting Kenya's fledgling Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) sector.
Thursday, November 29, 2012 — North Africa and Near East

Symbiotics’ impact bond issuance platform lends 10 million dollars to AccessBank in Azerbaijan

Source: Press Release

Azerbaijan’s leading microfinance bank, AccessBank, received 10 million dollars through MSME Bonds, Symbiotics’ impact bond issuance platform, on November 20, 2012.
Monday, October 29, 2012 — Sub-Saharan Africa

N220bn MFBs' fund to drive development, financial inclusion

Source: Punch Nigeria

The Federal Government is set to launch a N220bn fund to enable Nigerian businesses and citizens that lack access to traditional financial services access such services at a much lower cost. The Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Lamido Sanusi, said this at a press conference on the National Financial Inclusion Strategy in Abuja on Wednesday.
Tuesday, September 18, 2012 — Latin America

Venture Capital Is Taking Off in Mexico

Source: CNBC

Mexico has a large, stable and growing economy, currently the 14th largest economy in the world and, according to Goldman Sachs, will be the fifth largest economy by 2050.
Monday, September 17, 2012 — Latin America

12,000 Nicaraguan Families to Benefit From Improved Housing Conditions

Source: Hispanically Speaking News

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) approved a loan of up to $5 million to Nicaragua’s Foundation for the Promotion of Local Development (Prodel), paving the way for the non-profit organization serving the base of the pyramid to expand financing for basic community infrastructure and incremental home improvement projects.
Thursday, September 13, 2012 — South Asia

$4 billion planned for investment in social enterprise in 2012: Report

Source: The Economic Times

According to a global impact investment market study by JP Morgan, and the Global Impact Investment Network (GIIN), investors see the social enterprise as a market 'in its infancy and growing' with almost $ 4 billion planned for investment in 2012. Over the last eight years $ 600 million has been invested in social enterprises in India itself. The Monitor Institute estimates that over the next 5 - 10 years impact investments will grow to 1 percent of global assets under management, emerging as a new asset class.
Thursday, August 9, 2012 — South Asia

Government assisting SMEs development to reduce poverty

Source: Pakistan Observer

Islamabad—The government has made strategic shift in its strategies to assist infrastructural development of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in order to enhance productivety and exports of this particular sector to help reduce poverty in the country.
Friday, May 4, 2012 — No Region Specified

Tech majors HP, Google and Microsoft reach out to local start-ups to gain foothold in SME sector

Source: Economic Times

Large technology companies have a clear target group in mind when they design initiatives to promote entrepreneurship. Start-ups that engage in these programmes are typically led by founders set on building the next big technology service product. But not Vanajakshi Raveendra Lokhande, the owner of a small business that makes pickles and noodles in the north Karnataka district of Bagalkot.
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 — North Africa and Near East

GroFin Expands Pool of SME Funding to $323 million, Enters Three New Countries

Source: Press Release

GroFin, the multinational pioneer of growth finance working to create real impact through the support of small and medium businesses, has announced a growth in funds under management from $260 million to $323 million.
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