Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Bangalore-based microfinance firm Grameen Koota Financial Services Pvt. Ltd. (Grameen Koota) has lowered its interest rates by 200 basis points (2 percentage points) for education, water and sanitation loans, as part of its social objective to pass on benefits of low operational costs and reduced borrowing costs to its customers. The new rates of interest came into effect from June 1, 2016.
With this Grameen Koota borrowers will get education, water and sanitation loans at 18%, a significant 200 basis points reduction from 20% which were charged earlier. For the financial year 2016-17, Grameen Koota aims to disburse over Rs 800 crore under socially-focused loan products with the new reduced pricing. Grameen Koota has also reduced the core income generation loan rate by 1% from 23% to 22%.
“Grameen Koota has designed several socially-focused loans aimed at achieving developmental goals of poor and low income households. Our loans for children’s primary education, water connection, sanitation, medical and other emergencies mainly serve the purpose. This reduced interest rate will certainly help our customers to plan and avail more loans and also utilize them more efficiently,” said Mr. Udaya Kumar, Grameen Koota’s Managing Director and CEO.
Supporting Grameen Koota’s move to reduce interest rates, Paulo Brichetti, CEO of CreditAccess Asia NV, the parent company of Grameen Koota, said, “We are pleased with Grameen Koota’s continuous efforts to improve upon operational costs, thus enhancing their ability to provide services at low cost. Keeping in mind our long term relationship with our customers and their welfare, we always encourage our group companies to pass on such benefits as much as possible to our customers.”
Headquartered in Bangalore, Grameen Koota has 334 branches serving 1.4 million customers, with plans to add 70 more branches by the end of 2016. From social performance perspective, Grameen Koota’s flagship social awareness program ‘Jagruthi’ has reached 1.2 million customers as of March 2016. Further, re-certification by Smart Campaign for upholding client protection principles, a Social Rating upgrading to ‘∑α’, a code of conduct adherence rating of ‘COCA 1’ by SMERA and the MIX S.T.A.R. MFI recognition for its commitment to social performance and pro-poor business – all indicate Grameen Koota’s commitment to fulfil both its financial and social development goals.
About Grameen Koota:
Grameen Koota Financial Services Pvt. Ltd., a group company of CreditAccess Asia NV, provides finance and development services to female customers from poor and low income households in all the geographical areas of its operation, which include Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. Headquartered in Bangalore, Grameen Koota has 334 branches serving 1.4 million customers. It has been given the top industry grading of ‘mfR1’ by CRISIL and its long-term BASEL and NCD ratings by ICRA have been upgraded to ‘A-‘ during the year, with the industry’s top Microfinance India award accorded to it in December 2015.
More information on Grameen Koota can be found at www.grameenkoota.org
About CreditAccess Asia:
CreditAccess Asia NV (“CreditAccess”) is an innovative operator of integrated credit institutions across Asia, offering loans and other financial products to self-employed, micro and small enterprises in India, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Today, its regional companies in Asia, including Grameen Koota, have a total loan portfolio of over US$400 million with more than 1.6 million clients. Over the next two years, CreditAccess Asia aims to expand its operations into one to two new countries in Asia and to more than double its client base to over 3 million customers.