In March 2011, Opportunity International officially opened the doors to a regulated microfinance institution with a pending deposit-taking license application, headquartered in Kinshasa, DRC. Now in its first 18 months of operations, the institution is serving 5,184 active loan clients, more than doubling its outreach from one year ago.
Opportunity Congo has strategically placed its first two branches in large Kinshasa marketplaces: Masina and Gambela. In these vibrant markets, thousands of small-scale entrepreneurs like Henriette Balundu, pictured, who once struggled to earn a profit, are using increased incomes to improve the well-being of their families with greater access to nutritious food, clean water and education.
As Opportunity DR Congo gains momentum and brand recognition, it is achieving its targets to transform Congolese families. The institution is on track to achieve the following:
- Open its third branch in Matete area of Kinshasa. Staff is trained and construction complete. The central bank is set to finalize approval to open doors at the end of October.
- Offer savings – the application submitted in March 2011 encountered unexpected political delays but is now moving through the process.
- Launch Small Group, Individual and School Fee loans to add to its existing Trust Group loans.