To date, IFC has conducted 35 case studies of its client companies that are profitably serving base of the pyramid markets through inclusive business strategies. Read about all of the case studies below. To view the 9 most recent case studies click here.
Sociedad de Acueducto, Alcantarillado y Aseo de Barranquilla (AAA)provides water, sanitation and solid waste management services to 1.96 million people in Colombia, including 1.2 million low-income customers that now pay 72% less for their water than when they relied on water trucks. Customer service innovations like convenient bill payment and the “super client” recognition program has led to an increase in collection rates from 66% to 96%.
Sector: Water Country: Colombia
Aadhar Housing Finance (AHFL) seeks to extend opportunities for home ownership to low- and lower middle-income households in India. Established in 2011 as a registered Housing Finance Company (HFC), AHFL is regulated by India’s National Housing Bank. In its first year of operation, AHFL disbursed 861 loans worth $8.8 million, with approximately 50% of new loans going to customers earning $100 – $400 per month.
Agrofinanzas is a specialized, non-deposit taking financial institution that on-lends to farmers and rural companies in Mexico. Created in 2005, Agrofinanzas has provided access to the first formal financial services for nearly 5,000 clients. The company has approximately $100 million in its loan portfolio, and 99% of its clients earn less than $1,200 per month.
Alquería S.A. is Colombia’s third-largest dairy company that produces and markets Ultra High Temperature dairy products. Alquería supports micro-enterprise development through distribution linkages with 140,000 small-scale retail outlets, 690 independent distributors, with products sourced from more than 6,000 mostly small, independent dairy farmers. The company provides technical assistance to small-scale dairy farmers to help improve quality and increase production.
Sector: Agriculture Country: Colombia
Altobridgedevelops wireless network solutions that reduce network operating costs in delivering mobile voice, mobile broadband, and big data services. For remote, rural areas Altobridge designs, builds, and deploys low-cost mobile communications infrastructure — both hardware and software solutions..
Sector: Telecommunications Region: Worldwide
Anhanguera Educacional Participações S.A (AESA), Brazil’s leading private for-profit professional education company, reaches lower-income working adults through specialized offerings including vocational training sessions and distance learning platforms. In 2009, AESA educated over 755,000 Brazilian adults, with over 600,000 taking advantage of vocational training and distance learning options so that they could improve their skills and earning potential while continuing to work during the day. Surveyed graduates increased their earning potential by 50%.
Sector: Education Country: Brazil
Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Limited, one of the largest private integrated healthcare groups in India, has broadened the reach of health services providers in India by establishing facilities in semi-urban and rural areas and using telemedicine for specialist referrals. To ensure healthcare is affordable to all, Apollo Reach hospitals treat both low- and high-income patients and charge fees based on their ability to pay. By 2015, the hospital group is expected to serve 400,000 patients per year, 30% of which earn less than $2 a day. Click here for a presentation about Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Limited.
Sector: Healthcare Country: India
Bakhresa Grain Milling Malawi & Mozambique (BGM Malawi)sells packaged wheat flour to commercial bakeries, small bakeries, retailers and supermarkets. The company provides business and technical assistance training to small-scale bakeries and retail outlets to improve access to wheat flour and improve the quality of baked goods. To date, over 1,000 staff from small bakeries have received business and technical training, and over 1,800 staff from more than 200 small retail outlets have received merchandising support.
Sector: Agriculture Country: Malawi
Butwal Power Company is a leading hydropower company in Nepal involved in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity. In Nepal, many rural populations do not have access to electricity because the remote mountainous terrain makes national grid connectivity difficult and expensive. Therefore, in addition to supplying power to the national grid, BPC supplies electricity to 38,000 people in mid-western Nepal, either through direct connections or through one of its 112 rural distribution network partners. By utilizing a tiered tariff structure, BPC is able to make electricity more affordable for low-income customers.
Companhia Energética do Maranhão (CEMAR)is a power distribution company servicing Maranhão, one of the poorest states in Brazil. As the implementing agency for the government program “Light For All”, CEMAR ensures energy remains affordable by accessing subsidized government loans and grants for infrastructure costs and helping those residential customers classified as low-income to receive a reduction of up to 65% off their energy bills. Since 2004, CEMAR has added 700,000 new customers, nearly 50% of which were rural and low-income populations that did not have access to electricity. Click here for a presentation about CEMAR.
Sector: Energy Country: Brazil
Coca-Cola Sabco,one of the Coca-Cola Company’s largest bottlers in Africa, utilizes a manual delivery approach to reach small retail customers located in densely populated areas through the establishment of Manual Distribution Centers (MDCs). Through recruitment, guidance, and support, CCS has provided over 2,200 individuals, many of whom have never owned a business with entrepreneurship opportunities through MDC ownership. The MDC model has created over 12,000 new jobs and provided income to owners and staff who in turn support over 41,000 dependents. Click here for a presentation about Coca-Cola Sabco.
Sector: FMCGs Region: East Africa
Dialog Telekom PLC, Sri Lanka’s leading mobile telecommunications service provider with a market share of nearly 50% in 2009, has extended coverage in previously underserved, remote regions and reduced prices by leveraging synergies across multiple product offerings. Dialog also distributes phone cards and other products through 40,000 retailers, who on average have 1.8 employees, while providing owners with training in basic business skills. Over the past two years, Dialog has acquired more than 3 million new subscribers to reach 6.3 million in 2009.
Sector: Telecommunications Country: Sri Lanka
DineroMail is an e-commerce payments processor that facilitates electronic payments between businesses and customers, and operates in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and Colombia. In 2011, DineroMail served 10,000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and processed 5.6 million transactions. As an alternative to negotiating agreements with numerous banks and credit card providers, SMEs can lower costs using DineroMail’s free payments solution software to process transactions, paying either a flat fee or percentage of the transaction. Additionally, DineroMail allows unbanked customers to participate in e-commerce through cash payments into an e-wallet.
Sector: Electronic Payments
Countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and Colombia
Duoc UCis a non-profit, private institution of higher education with 13 campuses in Chile. Over 71,000 students enrolled in Duoc UC programs in 2012. 74% of students are the first in their families to receive higher education. Duoc UC focuses on affordability, with program costs significantly less than comparable university programs, and employability, with 80 courses relevant to labor markets. As a result, 81% of Duoc’s surveyed alumni are employed, most in the fields they studied.
Sector: Education Country: Chile
ECOM, one of the world‘s leading commodity traders, works with coffee growers - the majority of whom are smallholders at the base of the pyramid. ECOM’s direct financing, coupled with partnerships with technical assistance providers, has enabled these farmers to improve productivity, increase quality and gain the certification necessary for premium pricing. Between 2006 and 2012, ECOM purchased more than 81,000 metric tons of certified coffee, providing an additional $14.7 million in income for farmers. Click here for a presentation about ECOM.
Sector: Agriculture Region: Central America
Engro Foods Limited (EFL) builds strong relationships with small dairy farmers to ensure there is a high quality and consistent supply of milk for its dairy products. Approximately 200,000 farmers supply milk to EFL, primarily through its network of 1,400 Milk Collection Centers (MCCs) and 1,500 Village Milk Collectors (VMCs). In 2012, EFL received the G20 Challenge on Inclusive Business Innovation Award. In 2013, the Computerworld Honors Program, which recognizes visionary applications of information technology to promote positive social, economic and educational change, recognized EFL as a laureate for its EMAN system.
Sector: Agriculture Country: Pakistan
Faculdade Mauricio de Nassau (FMN)is a for-profit provider of flexible, relevant, quality, and affordable undergraduate, graduate, and technical education in Brazil. In 2011, FMN had more than 30,000 students, over 55% of which were female, and nearly half from the lowest three income classes. FMN has facilitated access to financing for 20% of its students, totaling $6 million of financial aid.
Sector: Education Region: Brazil
Financial Information Network & Operations Ltd (FINO)builds and implements technologies that enable financial institutions to serve under-banked populations through mobile point-of-transaction terminals and smart cards. FINO deploys field agents to enroll consumers in rural and semi-urban regions of India and conduct low-cost transactions. To date, FINO has enrolled over 20 million individuals in 21 states in India and provides them with access to a suite of financial services including remittances, deposits, credit, subsidies and insurance. Click here for a presentation about FINO.
Sector: Finance Country: India
Husk Power Systems, Inc (HPS)is a decentralized power generation and distribution company that provides affordable electricity in rural India. HPS sets up mini–grid electrification in the rice producing villages of India that generates electricity through the biomass gasification of rice husks and uses a point-to-point distribution system to connect households or commercial entities to an HPS power station. HPS power plants provide electricity to 150,000 people in 250 villages in the state of Bihar.
Sector: Energy Country: India
Ideal Investis the largest private student loan provider in Brazil with a portfolio of US$65 million, having served over 24,000 students at 265 institutions in 24 states. More than 60% of students receiving loans are women, 62% of students come from families with less than US$1,500/month in household income, and 66% are the first in their families to go to college.
Sector: Education Country: Brazil
Jain Irrigation Systems Ltd. (JISL)is the largest manufacturer of efficient irrigation systems worldwide and a leading processor of fruits and vegetables. Jain’s micro-irrigation systems (MIS) are more water and energy efficient than flood irrigation and increases quality and quantity of produce that farmers are able to grow. The company ensures its systems are affordable through relationships with banks, who provide credit and channel government subsidies. Through its model, farmers using MIS have increased yields by 60%-130% and raised their gross incomes by US$500 – US$6,000 per year. Click here for a presentation about Jain.
Sector: Agriculture Country: India
La Hipotecaria Holding Inc.,, a full-service housing finance company, specializes in originating, servicing and securitizing residential mortgages for low- and lower middle-income borrowers, the majority of whom are first time home buyers. It approves approximately 360 loans per month in Panama and 90 loans per month in El Salvador. As of 2012, the company had issued more than 20,000 loans.
Sector: Housing Region: Central America
Manila Water Company (MWCI)operates in Metro Manila’s east service zone, home to 6.1 million people. Manila Water’s inclusive business model creates partnerships with local government units and community-based organizations to include communities in the design and implementation of water supply systems. For instance, by visibly placing water meters in public areas, the community can regulate itself as water use and fees become more transparent. As a result, 99% of customers in this region have 24-hour water availability and customers now pay 20 times below per cubic meter rates previously charged by private water vendors. Click here for a presentation about MWCI.
Sector: Water Country: Philippines
Moderna Alimentos S.A.is Ecuador’s leading miller and marketer of wheat flour. Moderna currently supports over 4,200 small bakeries with critical ingredients, convenient ordering and delivery methods, technical assistance, and credit. Over 10,000 individuals at more than 5,000 small bakeries have received business and bakery training.
Sector: Agriculture Region: Ecuador
Promigas,an energy holding company in Colombia, through its Brilla loan program has provided more than 600,000 borrowers (93% of whom are low-income) with access to credit for home improvement materials, appliances, computers and capital to start micro-enterprises and pay school fees. Promigas has also provided approximately 25% of the Colombian population – 2.2 million households - with a cheaper and more environmentally-friendly cooking fuel.
Sector: Energy Country: Colombia
PT Summit OTO Finance,a motorcycle financing company in Indonesia, provides small loans to low and middle-income borrowers, with most loans going to individuals earning between $150-$300 per month, and many without bank accounts. OTO engages unbanked borrowers by basing its strategy on the microfinance model, increasing the mobility of low and middle-income borrowers, enabling greater access to markets and services. The company has 173 branches and cooperates with more than 4,000 authorized motorcycle dealers.
Sector: Finance Country: Indonesia
Suvidhaa Infoserve Private Limited (Suvidhaa),an e-commerce service in India, offers individuals the means to make electronic payments for a variety of virtual products and services. Suvidhaa offers online and mobile payments for 300 businesses, through 55,000 franchised distribution networks (Suvidhaa Points), in more than 1,800 cities or towns, with a total of more than 10 million individual customers.
Sector: Electronic Payments Country: India
Tribancois the financial intermediary for Grupo Martins, the largest wholesaler and distributor in Latin America, which services mostly family-owned micro, small and medium sized enterprises in Brazil. Tribanco provides more than 37,000 of Grupo Martins’ retailers with training and access to financing for inventory or store renovations, enabling them to remain competitive and improve profitability. It also facilitates short-term access to credit to low-income customers through credit cards offered via 9000 Grupo Martins’ retailers. More than 2.5 million credit cards are being used by low-income customers to buy food and basic necessities. Click here for a presentation about Tribanco.
Sector: FMCGs Country: Brazil
Trustco provides education loans to students enrolled at the Institute for Open Learning (IOL)—the largest private distance-learning tertiary education institution in Namibia. Trustco is located in Namibia’s capital, Windhoek, and has five branch offices and 50 staff. From 2005 to 2011, Trustco Finance registered over 55,000 loans. As of 2011, the company’s gross education loans amounted to $33 million. Typical loan amounts range from $125 to $2,500, with repayment terms ranging from 12 to 60 months and averaging 29 months.
a rapidly growing not-for-profit tertiary education institution, established in 1990 in Bogotá, Colombia. Uniminuto offers affordable, high-quality technical, technological and university education. Its largest presence is at the principal Bogotá campus where 30% of its students attend school. Its national network reaches nearly 82,000 students in 48 locations in over 35 municipalities, with over 50% of its students enrolled in distance learning programs.
Sector: Education Country: Colombia
VINTEis a homebuilder specializing in affordable, sustainable housing for low- and middle-income families in Mexico. VINTE’s cutting-edge technologies are helping it to introduce innovations that save homebuyers on ongoing home maintenance costs, such as designing homes to reduce gas bills by 75%, monitoring consumption of utilities through wall meters, and installing rooftop solar cells for energy production. As of June 2012, VINTE had sold more than 11,000 affordable homes.
Sector: Housing Country: Mexico
WaterHealth Internationaldevelops, installs, and operates water purification and disinfection systems that provide affordable, high-quality potable water for underserved populations in rural and peri-urban areas. WHI houses these water treatment systems in small-scale, decentralized facilities called WaterHealth Centers in local communities. At an initial investment of less than $10 per person, WHI can provide more than a decade of healthy drinking water to communities in need. WHI has established more than 500 WaterHealth Centers, and its customer base grew from 1.5 million in 2008 to 5 million in 2012.
Countries: India, Bangladesh, Ghana, Nigeria, Liberia, and the Philippines
Xiwang Sugar Holdings Xiwang Sugar Holdings is a leading corn processor, producing corn and high value-added starch sugar products in China. The company is the country’s largest producer of crystalline glucose, a starch sugar product, with an annual production capacity of 800,000 tons. In 2011, Xiwang procured 1.25 million tons of corn from 400,000 small farms.
Yellow Pepper Holding Corporationis the leading mobile financial network in Latin America and the Caribbean. It offers the infrastructure and services that enable banked and unbanked consumers alike to buy goods, receive remittances, pay bills, loans, and more via a mobile phone. Currently, over 700 small businesses use Yellow Pepper mobile payments. Its network has 3.2 million monthly active users in nine countries, conducting over 14 million financial and informational transactions per month.
Zain Groupis a mobile network operator reaching more than 65 million customers in 25 countries in the Middle East and Africa. In Madagascar, Zain is working to extend its reach to consumers who cannot afford their own phones through a Village Phone Program (VPP). The VPP, which has expanded to include more than 6,000 independent phone operators, is part of a broader inclusive business model in which network expansion makes coverage possible in geographically remote areas and economies of scale help keep prices low enough for base of the pyramid customers to afford.