Unitus Partners in Forbes Top 50 MFIs

January 3, 2008 Posted by Media Exposure

Unitus Partners Bandhan, Grameen Koota, and SKS in Forbes Top 50 MFIs

Unitus is proud to congratulate its partners Bandhan, Grameen Koota, and SKS for ranking among Forbes Magazine’s Top 50 Microfinance Institutions.

Forbes Magazine’s first-ever list of the World’s Top 50 Microfinance Institutions surveyed and ranked a field of 641 micro-credit providers according to scale, efficiency, portfolio risk, and profitability. Using this rating system, Bandhan ranked as #2, Grameen Koota ranked #19, and SKS ranked #44.

“This is one of the most prestigious rankings in the microfinance industry to date,” said Geoff Davis, Unitus President and CEO. “We congratulate the impressive leadership teams of Bandhan, Grameen Koota and SKS. We’re proud to see that the incredible work of our partners on the ground is being recognized and promoted to a savvy audience of investors. We are honored to work with such dedicated institutions and hope that this ranking serves as a springboard for further growth and recognition for these MFIs and others around the globe.”

Unitus works to fight global poverty by partnering with high-potential microfinance institutions to connect them to the growth capital and innovative business tools they need to grow rapidly and reach scale.

“Unitus has always been there to support us in all our endeavors,” says Mr. Chandra Shekhar Ghosh, Founder & CEO of Bandhan. “It has always encouraged us to scale new heights and dimensions. We wish that our association will go a long way in bringing more and more poor out of the poverty trap through the tool of microfinance.”

Bandhan, based in the Kolkata region of West Bengal, India, is reaching 800,000 clients with small microloans averaging just $82. Average clients earn less than $46 a month and are able to use the loan capital to expand small businesses and work their way out of poverty.  Bandhan CEO and founder Chandra Shekhar Ghosh continues to successfully execute on a bold vision for growth and continuing to develop programs that help the poorest of the poor in the region. Bandhan has been a Unitus partner since April 2005.

Grameen Koota currently serves over 120,000 clients in the rural areas surrounding Bangalore, India. A Unitus partner since April 2005, Grameen Koota has experienced tremendous growth, adding more than 100,000 clients in just over two years. Led by CEO and Founder Vinatha Reddy, Grameen Koota focuses its efforts on the poorest of the poor; most of their clients earn less than $133 annually. A high percentage of Grameen Koota clients use their loans for animal husbandry, trading or agriculturally-based businesses. Some clients use loans to increase their access to hygienic water and sanitation. Grameen Koota offers locally-based Credit Plus workshops, which include training in health, literacy, and business development, helping the poor improve the health and long term income prospects of their families.

SKS Microfinance, based in Hyderabad, India, has been a Unitus partner since March 2003. SKS has grown from serving 10,000 clients in 2003 to serving more than 1.3 million poor families today. Clients of SKS most often use their loans for animal husbandry and trading businesses. CEO and Founder Vikram Akula, has successfully led SKS through several stages of growth. Under his leadership, SKS continues to develop new loan products and insurance products to better meet the needs of their clients.

A full listing of the top fifty rankings can be seen here.

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