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  • IFC’s Partnership With CAWTAR Strengthens Research on Women’s Entrepreneurship in the MENA Region

    The International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Tunis-based Center of Arab Women for Training and Research to promote research on women’s entrepreneurship in the Middle East and North Africa. This project will help meet demand from development institutions and women’s organizations for more research on the importance of women’s entrepreneurship for private sector development. It will ...

    IFC (Washington, DC) PRESS RELEASE (link opens in a new window)
    North Africa & Near East
  • Rural Telecom Firms Gear Up for Rural Foray

    Rajesh S Kurup Global telecommunication giants are gearing up to take a deep plunge into the domestic rural segment, where, they believe, the next battle for telecom supremacy will take place. Handset majors like Motorola and Nokia and infrastructure provider Alcatel, and Indian companies such as Reliance Infocomm and Tata Indicom have already taken the first step to venture into the unchartered territories. Over 70 per cent of India’s 1 billion-plus population l...

    Business Week , via Zdnet India (link opens in a new window)
  • New insurance options for the rural poor in India.

    Foraying into the rural sector, Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance has tied-up with seven Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) to cater to the insurance and savings needs of the masses in semi-urban and rural areas. ’’Understanding the need to provide flexible, affordable and easily available insurance to the masses in the semi-urban and rural areas, the company has tied up with RRBs to get access to the bottom of the pyramid and provide insurance services to the people in these areas,’...

    WebIndia123 (link opens in a new window)

    Ramallah, 2 Dec. (AKI) - Five years on from the start of the second intifada against Israeli occupation, Palestinians are seeking to rebuild their shattered economy, but access to finance for small-scale entrepreneurs to kickstart development is scarce, says Khalil Shiha, head of development at of the Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committee (PARC). Currently micro entreprises cover 91 percent of the Palestinian economy; this reflects the importance of the future of microfinance, h...

    Adnkronosinternational (link opens in a new window)
  • Automaker eyes underserved rural markets

    MUMBAI: Ever since management guru C.K. Prahalad spoke about money to be made by tapping the market at the bottom of the pyramid, more and more corporates are succumbing to the collective purchasing power of the not-so-well heeled. And a significant portion of their strategy is directed towards the rural masses. If it was the e-chaupal for ITC and Project Shakti from Hindustan Lever, soon it will be the turn of two- and three-wheeler major Bajaj Auto to step on the gas in rural Bharat.

    DNA India (link opens in a new window)
  • Professionals to Unlock Venture Capital Doors for Small Town Entrepreneurs

    A group of professionals is unlocking venture capital doors for small town entrepreneurs The story of Aavishkaar is a fine example of sophisticated paying back by educated, affluent Indians spread all over the world. They realise it was India’s knowledge-edge that leveraged them to good lives and so they have sought to widen that edge, by funding small town Indians whose innovations can increase productivities and wealth in the countryside. Aavishkaar itself is a notable in...

    Good News Magazine India (link opens in a new window)
    South Asia
  • US Company Expands Access to Aids Drugs in South Africa

    In South Africa, where 6.5 million people are HIV positive and more than 500,000 would benefit from immediate anti-retroviral (ARV) therapy, a U.S. company is using private-sector efficiency and information technology to expand access to the life-saving drugs. BroadReach Healthcare, founded in 2002 to increase access to health care around the world, received $4.1 million in 2005 and will receive a similar amount in 2006 from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PE...

    United States Department of State, Cheryl Pellerin (link opens in a new window)
  • Opportunity International to develop a trans-African network of new commercial banks for the poor

    Opportunity International’s efforts in Malawi and Mozambique will provide thousands of poor Africans with financial tools to rise out of poverty and will demonstrate that rural Africa is a viable market for microfinance. Opportunity International, one of the world’s largest microfinance organizations, today announced that it received a $2.2 million grant over three years from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation that will go toward a project to develop a...

    PRNewswire (link opens in a new window)
    Sub-Saharan Africa