Georgia’s Quest to Promote Agricultural Insurance

agro-ge Agriculture is Georgia’s lifeblood. Fifty-three percent of the country’s working population is engaged in agriculture, many working on small plots of one hectare or less. The family farm is the backbone of Georgia’s rich rural culture. But from a financial perspective, it’s far from a sure thing. The agriculture sector employs more than half of Georgia’s workforce but accounts for only 10 percent of GDP. Many farmers earn little or no cash income. When natural disaster strikes and crops fail, rural families have little to fall back on.

The fragility of that life became obvious in August 2015, when a storm destroyed roughly 2,300 hectares of land in Kakheti. Hail, rain, and wind whipped across the landscape for 25 minutes. During that time, numerous homes and large numbers of livestock and crops were destroyed. In the Akhmeta region, the entire grape harvest was destroyed by a mudslide brought on by the storm.
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Workshop on FinTech challenges and opportunities

BFC took part in the workshop “The role of FinTech: challenges and opportunities for the banking sector” in Yerevan on June 27, 2016.

The event was organized by The Development Facility of the European Fund for Southeast Europe (EFSE DF) and the Central Bank of Armenia. In addition to providing a general overview of the challenges and opportunities that the banking sector faces in the modern world, the workshop also helped to enhance participant knowledge of FinTech, innovations in financial services, and current initiatives in traditional banking and startups.

The workshop was the third in an educational series that are part of a long-term effort between EFSE DF and the Central Bank of Armenia.

BFC’s Value Chain Finance at MFC Annual Conference

BFC was delighted to present on Value Chain Finance at the MFC annual conference, held on June 23-24, 2016 in Tirana.

During the session, BFC shared practical insights into the key success factors of making Value Chain Finance benefit all involved stakeholders.
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Improving personal financial education in Nigeria

symbiotics-reportSymbiotics prepared the terms of reference of the project, described as ‘developing financial education to low-income clients and enhancing financial and operational risk management’. Business Finance Consulting (BFC), as specialized consultancy selected for the project implementation, started training programs in March 2015. Grooming Centre’s clients range across various income and education levels, although the majority are low income and haven’t finished primary or secondary school.

PDF: http://symbioticsgroup.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/AR-2015_-web.pdf

Potential for Cost Reducing and Efficiency

costreducingBusiness & Finance Consulting (BFC) collaborates with AdVision Finance to investigate the potentials for cost-reducing and efficiency-increasing measures in microfinance institutions as well as which measures could possibly be implemented as part of a future project.

The study was commissioned by KfW Development Bank with the financial support of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

PDF: https://www.kfw-entwicklungsbank.de/PDF/Download-Center/Materialien/2016_Nr.3_Potential-for-Cost-Reducing-and-Efficiency_EN.pdf

Can Smartphones Help the Poorest Escape Extreme Poverty?

cgap_2014_110Trickle Up is piloting a new project integrating smartphones with both custom-built and pre-existing apps into our Graduation programs in India serving ultrapoor women. Like all of our participants, they will be given seed capital, skills training and coaching, and will be connected with other women in savings groups where they share advice and access loans. The addition of a smartphone, however, means that the 1,000 women in the pilot will have instant access to information, training materials, and other resources.

As part of a Clinton Global Initiative commitment to provide 25,000 extremely poor women with access to mobile technology, we are working on this pilot in partnership with Tata Communications, Tone, and Brightstar. Graduation is a tested, effective approach for helping people living in extreme poverty build sustainable livelihoods, by providing a sequenced, time bound set of inputs to support planning and investment in income-generating activities and access to financial services. This project gives us an opportunity to explore the potential role of technology in improving and scaling the delivery of the Graduation approach to more women in remote areas.

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