MetLife Foundation Partners with Kiva to Support Entrepreneurs and Build Financial Inclusion
MetLife Foundation has partnered with Kiva, a global non-governmental organization, to support entrepreneurs around the world through an employee engagement campaign. As part of this programme, a fully funded US$25 loan has been allocated to each of MetLife’s 23,000 employees in Asia to help entrepreneurs start, sustain and grow their businesses. After successful campaigns with MetLife employees in Europe, Middle East, Africa and Latin America, the programme has now come to Asia.
Steve Goulart, executive vice president and chief investment officer, MetLife Inc., and interim president of Asia., said: “For 150 years, we have kept our promises to our customers, and for the past 42 years, our Foundation has worked to build better communities everywhere we do business. The collaboration between MetLife Foundation and Kiva to launch the ‘Take Action’ campaign will offer a unique opportunity to MetLife employees in Asia to get involved and help people who lack access to traditional financing.”
“MetLife Foundation is committed to improving the financial health of low-income people around the world,” said Dennis White, president and CEO, MetLife Foundation. “A requirement for financial health is for everyone to have access to quality products that are safe, affordable, simple to use and designed to meet their needs and take advantage of opportunities. One way the Foundation addresses accessibility is by working with organizations like Kiva that provide ways for low-income people, including entrepreneurs and small business owners, to access credit and financing.”
To help achieve this mission of building financial inclusion globally, MetLife Foundation has committed US$200 million in grant funding over five years with the goal of impacting the lives of more than two million people.
Since launching in 2005, Kiva has facilitated more than US$1.1 billion in microloans by connecting a growing global community of 1.7 million lenders to 2.8 million entrepreneurs across the world with 81% of loan recipients being women. As Kiva borrowers repay their loans, the money can be re-lent to other entrepreneurs, multiplying the impact of every dollar and providing more communities with access to fair financial services.
“MetLife was founded on a simple and powerful insight that everyone needs access to the right financial tools to pursue more from life,” said Premal Shah, Kiva’s president and co-founder. “We are proud to be a part of MetLife’s efforts toward that vision. Through this partnership with MetLife Foundation, they are backing the dreams of thousands of entrepreneurs around the world, expanding financial access and empowering MetLife employees to take part directly in that mission.”
Photo courtesy of reynermedia.