Mastercard Foundation invests $4.4mn to drive financial inclusion in Africa
The Mastercard Foundation Fund for Rural Prosperity is aimed at supporting innovative and scalable financial products and services that improve the lives of poor people living in rural areas of Africa.
The Mastercard Foundation Fund for Rural Prosperity (FRP) has announced it will give five companies a total of $4,438,551 to drive financial inclusion in Africa. The five companies, with projects in Burundi, Ghana, Mali, Tanzania, and Zambia, were selected from among 214 firms that submitted applications in the fourth and final phase of the FRP’s rolling competition.
The five companies selected are Lima Kwanza Limited, PROSEMA-SA (Promotion du Sésame du Mali), Savonor, Sprint Money Limited, and Syecomp Ghana Limited. In the first three phases of the rolling competition, the FRP awarded $11,814,064 to 12 companies.
According to a statement released by Mastercard Foundation on Monday, the FRP is aimed at supporting innovative and scalable financial products and services that improve the lives of poor people living in rural areas of Africa. Since its first awards in 2016, the FRP has distributed more than $41.5 million to companies across the continent to drive financial inclusion. Its current overall portfolio includes 38 projects spread across 15 African countries, namely, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.
“These new awardees expand and enrich the Fund’s portfolio through their innovative projects, which cut across various sectors,” said Wambui Chege, Team Leader of the FRP. “The Fund is excited by the potential impact of the projects in its portfolio and will now direct focus to project implementation, monitoring and evaluation, and sharing emerging learnings from the portfolio with financial inclusion stakeholders. We look forward to driving financial access and meeting the needs of the rural poor across Africa.”
According to Lindsay Wallace, Director of Strategy and Learning at Mastercard Foundation, the latest additions to the FRP portfolio enables poor people in rural Africa to benefit from financial services, often for the first time. It also strengthens the FRP as a place where others can learn about what works at scale in driving sustainable financial inclusion for those who need it most.
Created in 2006 by Mastercard International and headquartered in Toronto, Canada, Mastercard Foundation operates independently under its own board, guided by its mission of advancing learning and promoting financial inclusion for people living in poverty.
The grant will enable the pilot phase of the agent banking network project in Owerri, Imo State.
IFC said the investment is in line with its mission to promote financial citizenship to the world’s poorest.
The development of a DFS ecosystem depends on the underlying regulatory framework and its ability to foster innovation and ...
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