Financial services advisory

Technical assistance for financial institutions (aka financial services advisory) supports financial service providers such as microfinance institutions, banks, and social lenders to design, introduce, and expand specific agricultural lending products.   The Initiative for Smallholder Finance’s analysis of the agricultural technical assistance market identified a handful of supply side technical assistance providers and a market for services worth an estimated $25-35 million, very small relative to the potential need for such support.

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BTCA
Report:

This October 2017 Better Than Cash Alliance report examines how shifting to digital payments...

Huxta
Analysis: On October 5, 2017 the RAF Learning Lab hosted a RAF Partner webinar to discuss and share learnings from our Annual Learning Review. View the deck below for more information.
BMS cover photo
Analysis: The third in the Learning Brief series, "Understanding profitability in smallholder finance", intends to (1) bring clarity to efforts currently undertaken by financial service providers (FSPs) to reach financial sustainability and (2) set the stage for future research. Drawing from a review of Mastercard Foundation rural and agricultural finance (RAF) partner experiences – including documentation, interviews a survey of 17 financial service providers, and secondary research from external sources – this brief provides FSPs with evidence to guide their journey in achieving financial sustainability.
Responsible Agriculture Finance for Smallholder Farmers in Tanzania and Uganda
Report:

The MasterCard Foundation's Rural and Agricultural Finance team recently commissioned the Social Innovation...

Marie Sow ICCO STARS
Spotlight: Across Africa, 80% of agricultural production comes from smallholder farmers, most of which are rural women. Yet, in countries like Senegal, only 20% of women have access to financial services and less than 30% of them are involved in governance for their Producer Organizations (POs). As a result, many women struggle to scale their farms and build their businesses. This blog explains how the ICCO STARS program, a Learning Lab partner, is working to address this challenge and empower female farmers through stronger access to finance.
Alternative delivery channels
Report:

The MIX  – with support from The MasterCard Foundation, UNCDF, and IFC – has...

Analysis: Our learning brief explores the role of digital approaches (across the lending value chain) in making it possible to profitably serve the smallholder market at scale. What do the digital journeys of financial service providers entail? What results are FSPs seeing and what challenges do they face?
Analysis: The Learning Lab is researching how digitalization affects the business case for smallholder finance, specifically: what role do digital tools play in successful business models for lending to smallholders? Here we provide early findings from the research, in the form of a presentation from a Sep. 2016 workshop where Dalberg and the Lab discussed the results of organization surveys and expert interviews.
Analysis: CGAP’s National Survey(s) and Segmentation of Smallholder Households in Mozambique, Tanzania, and Uganda explores the financial, agricultural, and digital demands of smallholder households. The surveys are a groundbreaking effort to build a representative evidence base for the demand-side of the smallholder finance equation. The links above provide access to both summary reports and full micro datasets for each country, for further analysis. This blog summarizes a few of the key themes and specific variations across the three countries.
Report: Cutting edge approaches to rural and agricultural finance rely on varying degrees of digitalization to reach more customers, and reduce costs and risks of serving smallholders. However, when the the product deployed is itself digital, there are new risks to manage. This handbook presents a risk management framework for DFS.
Tool: On August 31 the Learning Lab team hosted a private webinar for partners where we shared rationale and approach to measuring customer satisfaction in the rural and agricultural finance industry. The presentation from this webinar, alongside a short summary of its learnings and the full webinar recording are now available for public viewing.
Report: IIF and CFI Accion’s recently published report, “The Business of Financial Inclusion: Insights from Banks in Emerging Markets” digs into commercial banks and the role of digital technology in the emerging market, a concept the Lab is currently looking into for the RAF space.

Financial services advisory

Technical assistance for financial institutions (aka financial services advisory) supports financial service providers such as microfinance institutions, banks, and social lenders to design, introduce, and expand specific agricultural lending products.   The Initiative for Smallholder Finance’s analysis of the agricultural technical assistance market identified a handful of supply side technical assistance providers and a market for services worth an estimated $25-35 million, very small relative to the potential need for such support.