Removing Barriers: Increasing Delivery Channels to Build Access
During the first six months of 2011, Opportunity Malawi opened two new satellite branches and an additional kiosk, bringing the bank’s total outlets to 39 including its fleet of mobile banks. Opportunity Malawi also provides financial services to clients through Point of Sale devices at 57 merchant shops, 28 ATMs and via cell phones. Clients in Malawi now have 160 access points throughout the country.
Agricultural Lending Developments
Over the past six months, Opportunity Malawi has established new partnerships with External Service Providers. They work mutually to maintain crops in line with expectations of the rural model and expand their agricultural loan portfolios into new geographic areas. Mapping and profiling activities are underway to give farmers accurate knowledge of their farmable land and to help the bank determine the exact amount of input loans each farmer needs. During the first half of 2011, the agricultural team received specialized training to equip them to train agriculture loan clients.
Agriculture Client Financial Literacy Training
Opportunity Malawi is implementing innovative agricultural microfinance in rural communities. Opportunity recognizes that most of our rural clients have no experience with banks or financial services and have varying degrees of literacy skills. Thus, targeted financial literacy training is a core component of the rural expansion model. Opportunity is developing, piloting and implementing a series of multimedia training products for financial literacy including methods to deliver DVDs and demonstrations at key times and locations in rural villages.