Region
Sub-Saharan Africa

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"We make a comparison of microfinance banks (MBs) and commercial banks (CBs) in terms of efficiency, business orientation, stability, and asset quality by analyzing a large sample of banks from 60 countries around the world. Our findings indicate that microfinance banks have higher intermediation, non-interest income, wholesale funding and liquidity, but lower efficiency and asset quality. These significant variations are influenced by smaller microfinance banks and are driven mostly to African and Latin American microfinance banks."

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"Microfinance has gained significant attention as a social innovation, offering flexible and low-cost financial services to households who are otherwise excluded from formal financial services. Over the years, numerous research works have expanded the knowledge base of microfinance. Applying bibliometrics, we summarise findings from 1599 articles published between 1987 and 2022. Our performance analysis reveals insights into the research trend, including its geographical distribution, the theories under examination, and the most influential publications. More importantly, the knowledge foundation and thematic analysis categorize microfinance research into three broad themes, viz. impact of microfinance, management of microfinance and performance and efficiency of microfinance."

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"Microinsurance emerged out of different but parallel debates about the reformulation and expansion of social protection amidst the devastation of structural adjustment. It was, at least in its initial articulations, explicitly counterposed to the ‘market’-based solutions proffered by the World Bank, the IMF, and their allies. Yet, by the early 2000s, microinsurance and microcredit were being promoted in strikingly similar terms to the approaches they had initially opposed, and by the same actors."

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"This paper examines how Impact Investment (II) becomes part and transforms structured accumulation regimes and circuits, with a particular emphasis on South Africa's agricultural sector. Through the joint implementation of a macro study of the South African II circuits, and a micro study of a particular II fund’s practices and impacts, the paper develops an in-depth political economy assessment of II circuits in order to historicize these circuits, to map the South African II community, and to characterize the power balances presently structuring it. Rather than highlighting ruptures, it draws the attention to the historical continuities and path-dependencies as II related tools are rooted into older financial practices, shaping today's II development and practice - hence questioning II as a tool for empowerment."

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"In this report, we suggest a research agenda around understanding the growth of entrepreneurs and small firms in East African countries. The study is to be designed as a series of surveys conducted twice a year with the aim of being able to track firm and entrepreneurial dynamics in the short and medium term. This report is based on a pilot that we conducted with a small sample of firms (not just formal firms and not just large firms) in Kenya and Uganda. The aim was to understand whether we can get extremely cheap data using new technologies for firms that can shed light on the constraints faced by firms and entrepreneurs in these economies."

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"This report examines key assumptions held by development practitioners – in terms of the productivity, employment-generation capacity, and inclusivity of SMEs – and assesses the extent to which they are supported by robust empirical evidence."

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"SMEs are diverse in their size and nature, and their financing needs differ accordingly. Equity can be important, especially for firms with growth ambitions, but the focus of this paper is on lending. While British International Investment (BII) has 65 years of experience in supporting SME finance in developing economies, we focus here on the evolution of our approach to SMEs since 2012, and how our journey has led to our latest innovation: Growth Investment Partners (GIP), a new specialist SME financing business we have created in Ghana."

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The report by the Enrich in Africa Center (EiA-C) emphasizes the significance of funding for fostering innovation ecosystems in Africa and addresses the trends in funding activities from 2020 to 2023. It examines grant funding data from nine major funders, alongside insights from interviews with key stakeholders. The analysis encompasses both the broader innovation funding ecosystem and specific support for ecosystem activities and organizations. By providing data and intelligence, the report aims to empower both funders and recipients to build sustainable and impactful innovation ecosystems in Africa, highlighting EiA-C's role in facilitating collaboration and knowledge exchange among stakeholders.

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This guide is intended as an explanatory memorandum surveying the current legal landscape and market standards in South Africa concerning impact investing as well as the current viable impact investment options. This guide will be useful to, amongst others, South African debt and equity investors, grant-makers, foreign investors, incubator/accelerator portfolio managers, small and medium enterprises and social enterprises. The guide examines the laws and policies governing impact investing in South Africa, as well as different types and sources of financing that can be accessed for impact investment, and introduces a term sheet and “dos and don’ts” in carrying out negotiations and drafting term sheets.

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