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CGAP released the Global Financial Inclusion Database

CGAP, 25 April 2012

In its willingness to provide hard data to evaluate how women and rural residents around the world save, borrow and manage their risks, the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP) released the Global Financial Inclusion (Global Findex) Database. This is a comprehensive, individual-level, and publicly-available database that allows for comparisons across 148 economies. Women and rural residents make up more than 75% of the sample of the first round of the Global Findex database, based on more than 150,000 nationally representative adults in 148 economies.

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LeapFrog Investments expands insurance industry in Ghana via record foreign direct investment

Insurancenewsnet.com, 24 April 2012

LeapFrog Investments announced the largest private foreign investment in the history of Ghana’s insurance industry, acquiring a majority stake in the Express Life Insurance Company. Express will draw on LeapFrog’s capital and distinctive operational expertise to become the market leader in serving the large untapped market of low-income consumers in Ghana with products often costing less than 10 USD per month. The investment is expected to substantially increase financial inclusion in this pivotal African market and to mark a new phase of inclusive growth for the sector.

"To date, LeapFrog has made landmark investments in Africa and Asia, contributed to robust operational and financial performance of its portfolio companies, and currently reaches over 8.6 million people, 70% of whom are women and children. Through Express, LeapFrog aims to empower over 500,000 Ghanaians with financial safety nets and springboards to a better life", said Dr. Andrew Kuper, LeapFrog's Founder and President.

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Second volume of the Microinsurance Compendium reveals a breathtaking expansion of microinsurance coverage

ILO, 10 April 2012

The number of people covered by microinsurance has increased by almost 6.5 times in five years, reaching nearly 500 million today according to the latest ILO/Munich Re Foundation survey. The results show that Asia - with its two microinsurance powerhouses: China and India - is spearheading the trend, covering roughly 80% of the market. It is estimated that 60% of people around the world who are covered by microinsurance live in India. Latin America accounts for 15% of the market and Africa 5%.

According to the Compendium, there have been many innovations in the field of microinsurance over the past years. For example, new products covering a variety of risks have been piloted and distributed to poor households through an increasing diversity of channels (e.g., banks, retailers or cell phone companies). Commercial insurers have also entered the low-income market, creating significant capacity for scale.

Read the article or watch interview with Craig Churchill

Grameen Crédit Agricole partners with Pacifica in agricultural research project

Grameen Crédit Agricole, 12 April 2012

In its goal to explore new territories in the field of agricultural microinsurance, the Grameen Crédit Agricole Microfinance Foundation committed alongside Pacifica, the life insurance company of Crédit Agricole SA, in a research partnership in this area. This partnership aims to study the application of indexed crop insurance models in the context of southern countries, using satellite climate imagery. The Grameen Crédit Agricole Microfinance Foundation will soon welcome a PhD student for a two years period in order to move forward with the knowledge in this area.

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MicroEnsure and Idiom join forces to build new generation insurance system

PRNewswire, 1 April 2012

Idiom Limited, a New Zealand based software vendor, has been working with MicroEnsure for several years to develop a good understanding of the technical challenges posed by MicroEnsure's unique market offerings and the environments in which they must operate.

Now MicroEnsure and Idiom will deliver new systems that will further improve MicroEnsure's ability to serve the poor. Martin Fuller, Chief Operating Officer at MicroEnsure, is the business sponsor for MicroEnsure's system development project with Idiom. The project has been named ARK in alignment with MicroEnsure's mission to help the poor weather life's storms. Martin summed up the importance of the ARK system development project to MicroEnsure:

"At MicroEnsure we are constantly seeking better ways to service our customers, the world's entrepreneurial poor, in a cost effective and efficient way. This means investing in the right technology that will enable us to be flexible to the ever changing needs of our business, whilst keeping business transaction costs to a minimum. We are very excited to have teamed up with Idiom for the ARK project and believe that together we are developing a truly unique and innovative solution that forms a core part of our capability to most effectively serve the world's poor."

The practical implementation of MicroEnsure's innovative insurance product and channel strategies relies on a new generation of software. Idiom's decision automation tools are the core of a robust, agile and cost effective software solution that is designed to allow MicroEnsure to quickly and at low cost, define and deliver its many and varied products to markets that are too small to attract first world insurers.

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MILK's Client Math opportunities for students

MILK has collected data for a number of studies of different types of insurance around the world, and students are invited to help take full advantage of these rich datasets through MILK's Client Math research contest.

Click here for more details

Promoting Microinsurance in Ghana released newsletter n°13

BMZ/GIZ, together with the National Insurance Commission of Ghana (NIC) and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning (MoFEP) of Ghana, created the cooperation ProMiGH (Promoting Microinsurance in Ghana), which is dedicated in developing the capacity of insurers, delivery channels and other stakeholders involved in the provision of microinsurance in Ghana, and in addressing the challenges regarding the access to insurance services in the country.

In its efforts of promotion of microinsurance, ProMiGH participated in programmes such as the Business Plan workshop, Key performance indicators workshop and the Mentoring Programme, and designed a movie for educating clients on essentials of (micro)insurance.

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