Financing microfinance – the ICICI Bank partnership model
Capital constraint is an issue impeding scaling up of microfinance in India. Based on an analysis of traditional financing models and ICICI Bank's experience in India, it analyses the 'partnership model' of financing microfinance institutions (MFIs). This model is unique in that it combines both debt as well as mezzanine finance to the MFI in a manner that lets it increase outreach rapidly, while unlocking large amounts of wholesale funds available in the commercial banking sector in India. The paper also discusses building links to capital markets for financing microfinance through securitization. It concludes by highlighting certain key enablers for an environment of rapid microfinance growth including regulator support for hybrid models of outreach and investments in training and funding of initial expenses for new/emerging MFIs.