India: Microfinance firm eyes cities…

By Urvashi Jha Jul 13 2010 , Hyderabad
Bhartiya Samruddhi Finance (BSFL), the flagship company of Hyderabad-based microfinance firm, Basix Group, is firming up plans to enter into urban micro credit market. The micro finance institution (MFI) is developing a range of micro credit products to meet the needs of urban [...]

India: Private Equity funds step up investments in MFIs…

T E Narasimhan | 2010-07-13 01:31:00

High interest and repayment rates make micro-finance institutions profitable.
Private equity (PE) investments in microfinance institutions (MFIs), which fell by 12 per cent last year (2009), have recovered this year. Between January and June this year, MFIs have attracted PE investment totalling $84 million (about Rs 386.4 [...]

Bloomberg: SKS to Sell Shares July 28-July 30, Document Shows…

By Ruth David
July 12 (Bloomberg) — SKS Microfinance Ltd., India’s largest microfinance company, plans to sell shares in its $250 million initial public offering from July 28 to July 30, according to a sale document obtained by Bloomberg.
The price range at which the Hyderabad-based company will offer the shares will be [...]

India: Decoding microfinance…

By Pranab Ghosh, Hindustan Times
New Delhi– He would have been a hardcore banker had he not branched out to microfinance. And that was because “it is a business with a social mission offering double bottom line satisfaction to all stakeholders”. Reykam Jayasurya, an MBA and LLM, started his career in 1982 in [...]

World Bank to lend $407 mn for microfinance, quality stats…

NEW DELHI: The World Bank and India today signed two agreements for a total loan of $407 million to scale up microfinance services in unbanked areas and improve capacity to generate quality statistics.
The assisted projects are ‘Scaling up Sustainable and Responsible Microfinance Project’ ($300 million loan) and ‘India Statistical Strengthening Project’ ($107 million [...]

A spoonful of transparency: good but no cure-all

The New York Times ran a story last week about a five-year-old Indian law that reinforces the right—and sets in place the process—for individuals to request government-held information.
Ms. Chanchala Devi, for example, applied for a government grant she had heard was available to help poor people like her build their own houses. After four years of fruitless waiting, she used India’s Right-to-Know law to request a list of people who had received the money while she had not. Within days, the story reported, Ms. Devi’s own funding came through. The story continues:

India: MFI Funds Widen Focus to Cover New Social Sectors…

Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India, March, 16 2010 – Micro-insurance, micro housing finance, remittances and services in education & healthcare are coming under their radar.
India’s microfinance-focused private equity fund managers are now diversifying their investment base into newer areas of social investing as they raise new vehicles. These funds are investing in areas from healthcare services [...]

“SKS Microfinance may hit Street with Rs 1,000-cr IPO “

NEW DELHI: Hyderabad-based SKS Microfinance is looking to raise Rs 1,000 crore from its upcoming public flotation , whose progress is being

keenly watched as it is the first share issue by a company in the fledgling microfinance sector.
“We plan to sell around 10-15 % stake. The quantum of stake sale will depend on [...]

Sequoia may pick up 9.4% stake in CARE…

NEW DELHI: Private equity firm Sequoia Capital is looking to pick up 9.4% stake in rating agency Credit Analysis and Research Ltd (CARE) for Rs 73.5 crore, people close to the development said. CARE, a non-banking financial institution (NBFC) and rating firm, is controlled by IDBI Bank, SBI and Canara Bank. Currently, it has no foreign shareholding. [...]

India: SKS to file for IPO in 3-4 weeks…

MUMBAI, March 8 (Reuters) – SKS Microfinance, an Indian firm that makes small loans to poor borrowers, plans to file application papers for an IPO in 3-4 weeks, three sources with knowledge of the deal said. The exact size and structure of the fundraising was not yet determined, with one source putting the figure at [...]

BBC News: “Saving holds key to women’s empowerment”

Once upon a time, Sumitra used to roam the streets of the Indian city of Ahmedabad, collecting discarded caps which could be recycled and sold back to manufacturers such as Coca-Cola.
She would spend the whole day sifting through the rubbish collecting the caps in return for a few hundred rupees – about $2. Then in 2006, [...]

WSJ: Microfinance has The Makings of An Industry…

Opportunities at the bottom of the pyramid are driving the buzz today. One of the most significant areas in this category in India is Microfinance – both in what it has been able to achieve over the past couple of decades, as well as in its unrealized potential. Besides the scale of business that is [...]

Reserve Bank of India Asks MFIs to Improve Governance Standards

HYDERABAD: India’s booming microfinance segment is under the scanner, with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) issuing a veiled warning that it could be taken off the priority sector lending list of banks if the industry fails to improve its governance standards.
This was spelt out at a meeting in late January between senior RBI officials, [...]

Road to Hyderabad: T-3 Days

That's the team, or at least a small part of it.  Our team that has gotten us to this moment, just 3 days away from the Tech4Society event.

Road to Hyderabad: T-10 Days!!

Friends, this is my second to last Road to Hyderabad post.  That means we are less than 2 weeks away from the opening of the Tech4Society event.To be honest, it still feels very far away.  There are lots of last minute arrangements and decisions to make.  Long ago I naively believed I would feel like we were “almost done” by this point.  Ha! At this point 10 days feels like both an incredibly long time and an incredibly short one.  It will be bizarre to write this post next week when we are truly just days away. 

Road to Hyderabad: Lesson 18

Hyderabad, India
Image Source: Bindaas Madhavi
Well, I'm in Hyderabad.
You know what that means.
We are less than 3 weeks away from the beginning of Tech4Society.

India: Investors happy as microfinance lenders discipline growth…

Microfinance institutions (MFIs)—firms that offer tiny loans to low-income groups—are moderating their pace of growth, but private equity (PE) and venture capital (VC) funds that have invested in them aren’t complaining.
MFIs are going slow on opening branches and acquiring loan customers. In an attempt to improve quality control, the industry has prepared a code of [...]

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