This Man is a Rock Star

Grameen America Founder and Nobel Laureate, Professor Muhammad Yunus, inspires action at the The Global Citizen Festival in Central Park, NYC. More »

Business blooms for Sabina

With disciplined savings into an account set up at a commercial bank through Grameen America, Sabina had the capital to invest. More »

Professor Yunus Cuts the Rope

Professor Yunus launched Grameen America in 2008 in the wake of the financial crisis. Four years later, we have reached 12,000 families and counting... More »

 

New Findings Published in Global Microfinance Index

The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) of The Economist Group recently released a report analyzing the microfinance business environment in 55 countries around the globe. The study was based on evaluations of each nation’s regulatory, investment and institutional environment for microfinance. Among other things, factors taken into consideration are official legal recognition, interest rate restrictions, accounting standards, transparency, and the range of services provided beyond credit.

Peru, followed by Bolivia and the Philippines, topped the Global Microfinance Index. All three countries have governments that refrain from implementing subsidy programs and instead focus on poverty reduction through microfinance development and expansion. Therefore, market competition and the range of products and services offered by MFIs in these countries is very robust. North America was not included in the study. Latin American countries in general performed very well in the index, with six countries occupying the top ten spots.

Read more about the study here.

Grameen America

GIS Helps Grameen America Identify Microlending Markets

Esri, a geographic information systems company, recently published an article about how Grameen America uses its Business Analyst software to identify ideal target markets and prioritize metropolitan areas for program expansion.

In six years, Grameen America has expanded to 11 cities across the United States including New York, Boston, Indianapolis, Omaha, Charlotte, Austin, Union City, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, San Jose, and San Juan. Branches are located in areas with high concentrations of people living below the federal poverty line who are in need of Grameen America’s financial products and services.

Read more about Grameen America and Esri’s program here.

Map of pawnshops and check-cashing services in Los Angeles Metropolitan Service Area

Map of pawnshops and check-cashing services in Los Angeles Metropolitan Service Area

WATCH: Secretary Clinton and Andrea Jung on Women’s Economic Participation

Tune in Thursday at 12:45 p.m. EST to watch Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton speak on the power of women’s economic participation at an event sponsored by the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security. The talk will be part of the institute’s relaunch of the International Council on Women’s Business Leadership at Georgetown.

The council will examine the most pressing issues in international business and economic policy as they pertain to women’s economic participation and advancement.

Melanne Verveer, executive director of GIWPS and former U.S. Ambassador for Global Women’s Issues, will moderate a panel discussion following Clinton’s remarks.

Broadcast live streaming video on Ustream

Grameen America President & CEO Andrea Jung, Secretary Clinton, and Grameen America Chair Muhammad Yunus at the Clinton Global Initiative 2014 Annual Meeting

Grameen America President & CEO Andrea Jung, Secretary Clinton, and Grameen America Chair Muhammad Yunus at the Clinton Global Initiative 2014 Annual Meeting

 

Technology Revolutionizing the Banking Industry

NFCWristbandMobile banking is the new frontier of financial services. New mobile banking capabilities have completely revolutionized the way that people transact and move money. Even social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook have jumped onto the electronic banking industry bandwagon.

In India, Kotak Mahindra Bank has developed a money transfer service called Kaypay, which allows Facebook users to send money to friends without requiring any bank account numbers. Similarly, the French bank Groupe BPCE allows Twitter users in France to ‘tweet’ money to one another using an S-money service.

The rise in popularity of electronic banking has led to increased concerns over cyber security breaches and identity theft. A behavioral biometrics company BehavioSec may have found a solution to this problem. BehavioSec has developed multilayered security technology that monitors mobile users’ unique behavior while operating their device. This ‘Unique behavior’ includes attributes such as key sequence, pressure, speed and swipe. The technology can be used to prevent unauthorized users from accessing a mobile device or logging in to applications. Learn more here.

In addition to software technology, the banking industry has also seen new hardware innovations to assist in transacting. Spain’s CaixaBank launched an NFC-enabled wristband which enables the wearer to make contactless payments.

This new technology is quickly changing the face of financial services. What will we see next?