Cycle 1 Projects

Have a look at our projects for this cycle.

Project applications for Cycle 1 projects are open until October 15, 2020 23:59pm. Below are some examples of last year's Cycle 1 Projects - the 2020 projects will be announced soon!


Haiti: FINCA

Focus: Refining and expanding on an agricultural loan product for underserved segments in the Haitian market 

FINCA Haiti is the second largest microfinance institution in Haiti, serving over 45,000 borrowers in eleven branches with loan sizes ranging from USD$45 to USD$50,000. FINCA targets the poorest segments of the population in Haiti, with a mission to alleviate poverty through lasting solutions that help people build assets, create jobs and raise their standard of living. Currently, FINCA offers four types of products, an agricultural loan, village banking, SME loan, and individual loan. 


In this project, you will improve on the existing agricultural loan product to better target under-served clients in the market in Haiti.  The proposed loan product would have the necessary depth of details to be launched, with analysis on its profitability, FINCA’s capability gaps, as well as the potential environmental impact. 


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El Salvador: ADA

Focus: Study the microinsurance industry of El Salvador and provide recommendations on future strategies. 

ADA Microfinance (ADA) has 25 years of experience in providing accessible microfinance services for underprivileged clients in Africa, Southeast Asia, and Latin America. The SERINSA project is a social enterprise formed by REDCAMIF, ADA, and partnering microfinance institutions, aiming to reduce social security risks by providing low-income families with technical financial support, mainly through microinsurance services. 

In this project, you will conduct research on the microinsurance market of the target country. You would obtain relevant statistics, identify the key risks faced by potential customers, identify gaps in the market where consumer need is not unfilled, and conduct other relevant market research. You would then provide clear recommendations and conclusions on upcoming microinsurance strategies based on the above results. 


India: Hand in Hand

Focus: Developing a targeted score sheet for rating business ideas developed by self-help groups

Hand in Hand is an award-winning organisation that has partnered with governments and NGOs to implement need-based development projects. With a strong focus on rural families and villages, the organisation has been involved in projects in South East and South Asia. With the use of the Credit Plus Model, the organisation has developed a Self-Help Programme that aims to aid rural women living below the poverty line.

In this project, you will develop a simple, targeted score sheet that focuses on rating business ideas developed by the self-help groups. You will work with data from the organisation to identify trends in terms of successful loans for businesses in rural areas. The score sheet will be backed by a report that covers the academic basis for the score sheet and the data used to develop it.


Cambodia: Maxima

Focus: Identifying non-regional financing opportunities and developing recommendations to secure these funding channels

MAXIMA is a Microfinance Institution (MFI) that has been at the forefront of lending to low -income clients in Cambodia. With a founding team that has a strong background in finance, the organisation uses these expertise to contribute in the social and economic progress of Cambodia. Targeting those who are excluded by the formal finance sector, the bank continues to be a key player in the progress of Cambodia.

In this project you will work on developing a presentation stack to be used for gaining new investors for the institution from places outside of Asia. You will work on identifying suitable sources of funding and providing compelling reasons to invest in the institution. Through this project, you will be exposed to the decision making processes and the strategising that an MFI needs to do to thrive.

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Lebanon: IBDAA

Focus: Developing a client relationship management system to help segment an existing client base of Lebanese women, youths and refugees who are looking to receive loans.

IBDAA Microfinance is a non-banking financial institution founded in 2012. It aims to provide affordable microfinance services to poor Lebanese and legal residents in Lebanon, increasing financial inclusion to improve their quality of lives. It provides a diverse range of loan products that are strategically aligned towards women and youth in addition to the Lebanese refugee community.
In this project, you will help develop a  more effective client relationship management (CRM) system to better serve IBDAA’s existing clients. You will derive a more systematic approach to understanding the composition of their target market so that IBDAA can be better equipped to serve their customers’ needs, as well as explore the possibilities of cross-selling, growing and nurturing their client base. This project will also involve identifying niche demands whilst assessing the risks involved in addressing each of these segments, such as the projected percentage of non-performing loans (NPL), or other risks, as well as develop specific customer personas for segments within their target market. 

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Nigeria: Prestige MFB

Focus: Developing a financing strategy to scale operations with an aim of increasing financial inclusion of the large unbanked population in Nigeria. 

Prestige Microfinance Bank is an early stage microfinance bank in Nigeria, with an aim of increasing financial inclusion to the large unbanked population. It primarily focuses on disbursing micro-loans to individuals in low income sectors and early stage businesses, with a diverse range of loan products designed for micro-enterprises and solo-preneurs. Currently, Prestige is sourcing for financial channels to grow their capital base, so as to grow and scale their operations and to develop digitalisation strategies to better serve their customers. 

In this project, you will design a financing strategy to secure funding channels from bank and non-bank institutions to grow Prestige’s capital base. This will include researching available funding channels for funds for microfinance institutions, as well as assessing Prestige’s operations and providing recommendations on how it can qualify for these funds. 


 Indonesia: iGrow

Focus: Developing an impact analysis on schemes designed to increase efficiency in the farming industry.

iGrow is a marketplace that connects farmers with resources and investors with the end goal of enabling the production of high-quality food. The organisation identifies the under -utilisation of resources as the key problem that is hampering food production. With the broader goal of increasing efficiency in the farming industry, the organisation connects farmers, landowners, investors and crop buyers to strengthen different components of the supply chain. Through these efforts, iGrow aims to produce food and preserve life.
In this project, you will develop an impact analysis on the efforts of iGrow in Indonesia. The. You will build on the organisation’s pre-existing reports and help to develop a quantitative analysis of the impact that iGrow’s schemes have had on the farmers it has worked with. The report will cover the business growth experienced and the impact this may have had on the economic well-being of the farmers. 


Indonesia: XSProject

Focus: Developing a Social Performance Management framework for assessing social programs targeted towards the trash-picking community in Jakarta. 

XSProject is a non-profit organization based in Jakarta, Indonesia, that works to improve the lives of poor families living in Jakarta’s trash picker communities. XSProject has impacted the lives of over 100 families, where the average return of a day’s work of trash picking is around US$4.


The two main pillars of XSProject’s work are manufacturing and social service, with the former employing a social enterprise model in the up-cycling business of non-biodegradable plastic, while the latter focuses on improving the quality of life of the local community through health, education, and central community programs.   

In this project, you will design a Social Performance Management (SPM) framework to complete an impact assessment report of XS Project’s existing social programs. The results would be used as an important reference for the future development and improvement of existing and new social programs, including recommendations on cost-effective methods to increase the scale and impact of XSProject’s work. 

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