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UNITED STATES

MULTI-SUPPORT FOR MICROFINANCE

Photo : United States - In New York BNP Paribas supports BOC Capital, which offers both micro-loans and consulting to micro-entrepreneurs.

Microcredit institutions lack resources and generally do not have the capacity to collect savings. The Group uses all resources available to help them: funding; equity investments; corporate philanthropy to finance micro-borrowers; and technical assistance. In the United States, BNP Paribas has funded BOC Capital since late 2014. This New York institution funds minority or immigrant micro-borrowers and encourages them to integrate protection of the environment into their projects via green loans. At the same time, Bank of the West provided $800,000 in loans and grants to organisations that provide financial services to those excluded from the banking system.

EMERGING MARKETS

INCREASING SUPPORT

BNP Paribas supports microfinance in 11 countries via the funding of 29 institutions. The Group has indirectly contributed to the financial inclusion of more than 250,000 people in 2014, representing growth of 64% compared to 2013.

INDIA

HELPING TO PROTECT CUSTOMERS

BNP Paribas is especially committed in India, where it provides funding of more than €27 million to 15 institutions and supports PlaNet Finance in the creation of a Risk Management System. This project aims to protect low-income customers and increase transparency by consolidating information on loans taken out by customers with financial intermediaries, thus reducing the risk of overindebtedness among borrowers.

Photo : India - This micro-borrower was able to set up a workshop thanks to a micro-loan from an MFI supported by BNP Paribas.

Photo : ABHIJIT BERA.

INTERVIEW : ABHIJIT BERA, CEO OF STEP, INDIA

Can you tell us about STEP?

We created the NGO STEP in 2007 to work for the development of women living in the slums of Kolkata and Howrah. For example, we promote health awareness and support for administrative issues to our clients. But our main activity is to provide micro-loans and business advisory to micro-entrepreneurs. To support these actions, BNP Paribas has granted three loans to STEP since 2012.

How did you use the loans granted by BNP Paribas?

The first two loans financed the creation of two new branches. The third loan helped us increase our average loan amount from I.N.R. 6,000 to I.N.R. 8,000 (see asterisk).

(asterisk) About €90 to 120.
We are very grateful to BNP Paribas, which was the very first financial institution to grant us a loan. It has helped STEP attract more investors and lenders. We have 6,000 clients and by December 2016 we plan to have 10,000 active borrowers.

MORE ABOUT… MFIs

By financing a number of MFIs such as STEP, BNP Paribas indirectly participated in the financial inclusion of almost 250,000 people in emerging markets in 2014.