The Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation and Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank (Crédit Agricole CIB) have joined forces to guide and finance Indian microfinance institutions that support projects for segments of the population wo are excluded from the conventional banking system. Through this partnership, the Crédit Agricole Group is mobilizing its expertise in inclusive finance in India and committing funding to the tune of €12 million.
Loans for a global amount equivalent to €12 million in local currency may be granted by Crédit Agricole CIB to Indian microfinance institutions under the guarantee and supervision of the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation. The latter institution will deal with the origination and examination of funding applications and their monitoring. Loans granted to institutions will help facilitate access to financial services to the greatest possible number of people so as to encourage the development of income-generating activities. Rural populations and women entrepreneurs will be the main beneficiaries.
Through this partnership, Crédit Agricole CIB emerges as a committed stakeholder for inclusive finance in India. “The complementary nature of the know-how has played out optimally here, with the Foundation contributing its deep understanding of the stakes of microfinance, and the Indian branches of Crédit Agricole CIB their demonstrated knowledge of the local, complex and evolving banking regulations,” said Emmanuel Bouvier d’Yvoire, Senior Country Officer of Crédit Agricole CIB for India. Present in India since 1981, Crédit Agricole CIB is established in Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai and Pune.
“Alongside Crédit Agricole CIB, we support institutions that promote the development of rural economies in India. This cooperation shows the Group’s commitment to act every day in the interest of society,” says Eric Campos, Executive Officer of the Foundation and Head of CSR of Crédit Agricole S.A. For the Foundation, it is a sterling opportunity to work in India where microfinance is highly developed but exclusion remains a challenge.
The first financing operation is a loan of INR 5 million, guaranteed fully (100%) by the Foundation, to Fusion Microfinance in India. This company provides financial products and services to more than 1 254 007 women, mainly (86%) in rural areas, who compose its entire clientele. The institution has a portfolio of €237 million. It is present in 17 Indian States, with a network of 440 branches and 3 695 employees.