The OPIC Blog

Archive for the Microfinance Tag

Sailing the Seven “Cs:” Unlocking bank financing for SMEs in the Middle East

By Arun Hsu, Chief of Party, Jordan Loan Guarantee Facility In this guest post, an OPIC partner outlines a system for determining creditworthiness of potential borrowers that lack collateral and a track record of working with banks. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are the key to innovation and an engine of economic growth and job creation in the Middle East Read more…

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Featured photo: Finca International supports women entrepreneurs in Mexico with microfinance loans

Microfinance group members in Tlayacapan, Mexico meet to collect installments on a loan from Finca International, a U.S. microfinance institution with a global footprint in 21 countries.  This all-women group of entrepreneurs who sell food, clothing and crafts in local markets has been a client of Finca Mexico for 10 years.

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Helping SME’s invest in emerging markets: A conversation with James Polan, OPIC’s Vice President of Small and Medium Enterprise Finance

OPIC’s Small and Medium-Enterprise (SME) Financing is available for businesses with annual revenues of less than $400 million. In this interview, James Polan, Vice President, Small and Medium Enterprise Finance, explains the work that he and his colleagues do to provide counsel and financial products to these types of businesses looking to do business in emerging markets. Why does OPIC focus so Read more…

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Why the world’s poor are a good credit risk

By John Aldonas Deputy Vice President, OPIC Small and Medium Enterprise Finance Does it make business sense to invest in the world’s poorest people? Earlier this month, I joined some OPIC clients on a panel at the Society for International Development, where we discussed why private sector investments in some of the poorest and least developed parts of the world Read more…

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Inc. magazine highlights entrepreneurial opportunities in frontier markets

Countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, South Sudan and Haiti “have a long way to go before earning the optimistic label ‘emerging markets,’” note the authors of a recent Inc. magazine series, Entrepreneurship on the Frontier. Nonetheless, they say that these countries have become entrepreneurial hubs. The series, which explores entrepreneurial activity in some of these highly challenging and highly promising markets, Read more…

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OPIC celebrates innovation in 2012 annual report

OPIC’s newly-released 2012 annual report showcases several key projects and agency priorities of the past year and highlights the role of innovation in our work. Innovation has long been a guiding principal at OPIC, which has built creative deal structures and partnerships to address the challenges of investing in the developing world and worked with several innovative businesses that found Read more…

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Expanding Horizons Workshop heads to South Carolina on May 7

OPIC will take its popular Expanding Horizons workshop to Charleston, South Carolina on May 7 in an effort to educate more small businesses from the southeastern United States about the benefits of expanding into emerging markets, and the ways that OPIC finance and insurance tools can support their efforts. OPIC began its Expanding Horizons series in 2006 in recognition of Read more…

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Catalyzing support for impact investing

By Mitchell L. Strauss, Special Advisor, Socially Responsible Finance Throughout our 40+ year history as the U.S. government’s development finance institution, OPIC has been transforming private capital into solutions for social and environmental challenges around the world, while also generating a financial return, allowing us to make our own contributions to the impact investing sector. But in the last five Read more…

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Measuring and monitoring impact: A conversation with Margaret Kuhlow of OPIC’s Office of Investment Policy

Measuring and monitoring impact: A conversation with Margaret Kuhlow of OPIC’s Office of Investment Policy (Part one in a series) As the U.S. Government’s development finance institution, OPIC is focused on supporting projects that deliver real and measurable benefits in their host countries. The Agency is also mandated by Congress to hold all of its projects to high environmental, social, Read more…

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OPIC and TPC, local MFI, support home improvement loans for low-income Cambodians, with a nod to architectural past

By Loren Rodwin, OPIC Managing Director of Micro and SME Finance Traveling through Phnom Penh, one learns quickly that Cambodia is not only a land of great physical beauty, but keeper of a stunning architectural inheritance, too.  And how Cambodians keep it: the Khmer-style temples that dot the capital’s avenues are both jaw-dropping in their look and pristine in their Read more…

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