Portfolio Partner Profile
FINCA Impact Finance
FINCA Impact Finance (FIF) is a global network of 16 microfinance institutions and banks that provides socially responsible financial services to empower low-income individuals and communities to invest in their futures. FIF believes all people should have the opportunity to leverage their wisdom, talent, and effort to determine their own destiny. The network is leveraging the power of technology to expand financial inclusion, putting financial power in the hands of or around the corner from their customers, no matter where they live.
FIF’s mission is to end poverty through sustainable and scalable solutions driven by the insights and needs of people in the communities where they live and work. With nearly 40 years of experience and a mostly local staff of more than 7,000, FIF delivers a double bottom line of positive social impact and financial sustainability.
Featured Impact Story
Supporting entrepreneurs to support their families
Chichicastenango, Guatemala: In 2007, Lucia Margarita Pacajoj Ticum began selling authentic Guatemalan souvenirs from a small stall at the local market. She was earning money, but it wasn’t enough to support her family.
With a loan from FINCA Impact Finance’s subsidiary in Guatemala, Lucia was able to purchase materials in bulk to grow her product line. Soon, she added backpacks, pants, and quilts to her stand, all of which were higher profit items and differentiated from here competitors’ product lines.
To support her growing market stall, Lucia hired two workers to produce large quilts and colorful backpacks. She could even afford to purchase two sewing machines – one for each of her employees. With the income her business generated, she was now able to provide her family a better quality of life. By budgeting and saving her income, she has since added electricity and running water to her home.
Supporting Syrian Refugees in Jordan
Abu Munir and his family left a prosperous and happy life to flee the Syrian civil war when conditions became too dangerous for them to stay. They arrived in Irbid and Jordan with nothing but the skill to make bread. “I knew I needed to start a business to generate income,” Abu Manir said.
He invested the last of his savings in an expensive kneading machine and opened a bakery. For a while the business ran smoothly and the bakery sold as many as 70 bread bundles a day. Then, the COVID pandemic hit the bakery hard and, like many small business owners, Abu Munir found he was struggling to make ends meet. A loan from FINCA helped the bakery weather the shock, and now the business provides enough for the family. Abu Manir hopes the bakery will continue to grow.
Foreign-born residents make up one-third of the Jordan population. FINCA Jordan has a refugee lending program designed specifically to support financial inclusion for foreign born residents like Abu Manir.
Photo credit: Al Compton, The Matale Line
Starting a shop with children's futures in mind
Hayat Abdul Karim Majid is from western Sudan. In 2009, she fled her family home in search of safety from the long-running War in Darfur. Hayat, her husband, and their children moved repeatedly in the ensuing years. In 2016, they arrived at the Kiryandongo refugee settlement.
In Kiryandongo, refugees like Hayat received land, shelter, and support from the government of Uganda and international aid agencies. It was an amazing opportunity, one that Hayat would not let slip away. Life in Kiryandongo was better than it had been. Hayat dreamed, however, of earning money so that her children – two boys and two girls ranging in age from five to thirteen – could have the life and education denied to her. To realize this dream, she and her husband built a small shop on the land the government gave them.
The store sells basic grocery items like milk, crackers, soap, and juice. Hayat also carries specialty items from Sudan that can remind her and her neighbors of days before the war. But her best-selling item is the perfume Hayat makes and mixes herself. Hayat is proud to be the only purveyor of perfume in the settlement.
The loans Hayat has received from FINCA have allowed her to make additional investments in the store. She bought more stock and is increasing her turn-over and her profits. She also has been able to open a small restaurant that employs three people and most recently opened a business selling charcoal.
As Hayat has repeatedly told her loan officer, “I work all this work and I took the loan because of my children. I need my children to be happy. I need my children to learn in very good schools. I need my children to be doctors and that’s why I took the loan from FINCA and I work hard like that.”
Learn more about this impact story.
Keeping Young Children in School
Resty has been a FINCA Uganda client for more than 20 years. While her husband’s earnings as a mechanic provide for basic needs, the family depended on her income (with the supplemental assistance of FINCA loans) to cover school fees. Her eight children have completed secondary school and learned good trades. Now her grandchildren are in school.
Resty says her first loan for about 40 USD helped her invest in her farm at a time when no one else would lend to her. She recently built the foundation for a water tank that holds more than 10,000 liters, to collect water from her roof which will reduce the need to haul water from nearby streams or from the tap in town when the streams are dry. She may even be able to sell the water to neighbors.
She is part of a village banking group, which she prefers over securing an individual loan. “We support each other and share ideas,” she says. “FINCA has taught us and brought us together.”
Building Women's Financial Acumen and Resilience
Rose Michelle is an optician in Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. She took out her first FINCA loan to build up the stock in her store so patients could immediately find and take home the glasses and accessories they needed. With the support of loans and financial education from FINCA, Rose’s business thrived. She had two full-time employees and money to take care of herself and her children.
When COVID-19 hit, the business suffered as fewer and fewer customers came to her store. Rose was unable to pay her employees and, for the first time, was falling behind on her loan payments. FINCA worked with her to devise a new payment plan that matched her financial capacity. As the lockdowns began to subside, Rose saw an opportunity knowing that customers would be eager to spend as soon as they could safely move around. Rose applied for and received a new loan from FINCA to revitalize her business.
She describes her FINCA loans as an “oxygen balloon for my business.” She is once again able to pay her staff and she slowly repaid them for the months that they worked without a salary. Rose’s business is now operating well, and she is looking ahead to continue the growth of her business.
Growing a farming business
Croix des Bouquets, Haiti: August Jean Soliny is a farmer and single father to four children. After the disastrous earthquake in Haiti in 2010, the water in his community became contaminated. The contamination affected his crops and August found it difficult to get fresh, clean water for his land. He lost all the money he invested in his vegetables and fruits.
Using an agricultural loan he secured through FINCA Impact Finance’s subsidiary in Haiti, August was able to plant okra, corn, and tomato seeds on his farm. With subsequent loans, August purchased more seeds in bulk to plant.
Today, August has an abundance of vegetables and fruit to sell. He also has the help of six workers, who help him harvest the produce, which he sells to merchants. With the profits from his farm, August was able to save enough money to purchase horses, donkeys, chickens and cows to rear and sell for additional income. His farming proceeds also help to support his mother, brothers, and four children who attend school.