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Finance

SmartMoney International’s CEO, Michael Spencer, argues that financial institutions need to develop closer working relationships with the rural communities they seek to serve

© SmartMoney International

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Improving rural women’s access to finance represents an untapped business opportunity for financial service providers prepared to tailor products to meet their needs and to find innovative ways to overcome social and logistical hurdles.

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Through incentives, training and technical assistance, USAID’s 5-year Financing Ghanaian Agriculture Project (FinGAP) has changed the way financial institutions and business advisory service providers engage in agriculture.

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Enterprise challenge funds in Africa are matching grant funding with agribusinesses that have the potential to grow and create impact for rural populations. By mitigating against market risk, challenge funds are boosting the development of investable and sustainable businesses.

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Bamboo Finance and Louis Dreyfus Commodities are launching a €46 million investment fund, NISABA, to support agriculture in sub-Saharan Africa. The fund will support small and medium enterprises along the value chain by improving access to data and training, and by linking producers to end consumers.