Advancing financial inclusion: BRAC Microfinance in 2019

February 10, 2020

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2019 was a significant year for BRAC Microfinance in achieving our mission of advancing financial inclusion. We accomplished new milestones and started new pilots. Let’s look back on one of the busiest years for BRAC Microfinance.

Achieving new milestones
Last year we disbursed USD 5.07 billion in loans in Bangladesh – an increase of 21% from 2018. We served 7.1 million clients and 5.6 million borrowers. Our clients saved a total amount of USD 100 million, an increase of 15% from 2018.

Our reach beyond Bangladesh expanded. We began our operations in Rwanda on 7 June 2019 under the name BRAC Rwanda Microfinance Company PLC.

BRAC Uganda Bank Limited became our first international operation to transform into a regulated deposit-taking financial institution on 24 April 2019.

Click on the photos below to know more.

A stepping stone on becoming digital
We initiated an SMS pilot project to make financial transactions more convenient and secure for our clients.

We piloted a digital claim processing system for our credit shield insurance product. The new digital model is time and cost-efficient – ensuring quicker settlements for clients, and enabling households to safeguard their finances in the event of a death or disability of an earning family member.

Lastly, we began piloting a digital client service (DCS) system: an app-based client service platform to better support our clients in Bangladesh. The digitised system is boosting staff productivity, enabling dynamic reporting and fostering data-driven management and decision-making.

Click on the photos below to know more.


Promoting a gender-friendly environment
Establishing a women-friendly workspace for both our staff and our clients has been our top priority. We began opening breastfeeding corners at our branch offices from 2019, creating a safe and supportive environment for infants and mothers.

Not only our clients, but we ensured our female field staff was given an inclusive and friendly work environment. With 8,000 women working in the field offices and spending roughly eight hours in the field, the microfinance programme, and human resources and learning division and road safety programme jointly initiated motorcycle driving training for women staff.

Click on the photos below to know more.

Looking ahead
With the tragic loss of our founder Abed bhai at the end of last year, we know he would not rest until we build an equal world. Therefore this year, the BRAC microfinance family is looking past our failures and putting our head high to fight inequality. We are doing this by reaching more unbanked and underserved population with useful and affordable financial products and services, delivered in a responsible way.

Read what we achieved in advancing financial inclusion in 2018 here.

 

Kamran Ibne Abdul Qader is a senior communications officer for BRAC’s microfinance programme.

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Taposi Roy

Yes, It was a great year of achievement for MF in terms of Financial Inclusion, going Digital and promoting gender Equality. Hope 2020 will create positive impact in the life of underserved and unserved population.