For 15 years, the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation has contributed to the fight against poverty and inequality through financial inclusion, particularly for women and in rural areas in some of the most fragile countries. It supports in the long term microfinance institutions and social impact companies through a global relationship with each partner, with the financing of loans or guarantees, technical assistance missions, equity participation and as an investment fund advisor.
At the end of September 2023, the Foundation operated in 37 countries, 79 partners were supported, including 69 microfinance institutions and 10 impact companies with an outstanding amount of 87.8 million euros.
The Foundation was born from the meeting of two cultures
The Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation originated from the cooperative movement of Crédit Agricole, which financed French farmers, to whom no one lent in the 19th century. The Foundation carries Professor Yunus’ vision that lending to the poor creates jobs and generates sustainable income for the benefit of all. It is microcredit, born in the late 1970s in Bangladesh. Professor Yunus’ Grameen Trust and the Crédit Agricole Group share the same mission: to give access to essential financial services to those excluded from the classical financial system, particularly women, in rural areas so that they can develop their own activities and in the most vulnerable countries.
The Foundation stands out by intervening in difficult areas excluded from financial services, with unstable geopolitical and economic context (in the Sahel region for example) and by supporting its partners in the long term. In 15 years, the Foundation has forged a socially responsible partnership.
The reality of borrowing clients
Microfinance Positive influence on the decision-making power of clients promotes the empowerment of women entrepreneurs and strengthens their overall socio-economic status. All the actors involved are active to support them continuously but face the current challenges: difficulties encountered in the rise of risks for microfinance institutions and clients (over-indebtedness), the difficult impact measurement, little job creation, and climate change.
Ambitions 2025 of the Grameen Crédit Agricole Foundation.
Support the digital transformation and adaptation to climate change of its partners through global advice.
Promote entrepreneurship, especially for women, and support small-scale agricultural producers to face the challenges of digital transformations and adaptation to climate change.
Five key dates
2009: the Foundation grants a first loan from the Foundation in Kosovo to the microfinance institution KRK, 1 amount of 2 million Euros
2010: First participation in a social business company – La Laiterie du Berger in Senegal – for an amount of 200 million CFA francs (305,000 €).
2012: India: 1st 1-week study trip on index microinsurance with 23 participants from 4 continents and 12 countries participated representing various professional backgrounds: regulators, insurers, managers of microfinance institutions, private foundations, funders.
2013: Establishment of a first technical assistance program «the African Facility», aimed at helping small microfinance institutions in Africa, in collaboration with the French Development Agency
2018: Launch of the «Solidarity Banker» programme with Crédit Agricole SA, which enables technical assistance missions to Crédit Agricole group employees on behalf of the Foundation’s partners
2020: At the initiative of the Foundation, an international coalition of 30 organizations has emerged to support microfinance institutions and their clients in the face of the economic crisis caused by Covid-19.