Celebrating 2016

By Julia Kurnia

2016 was a record-breaking year in so many ways.  Here are just a few of the highlights:

Number of loans funded: 21,846

Thanks to you, over 20,000 entrepreneurial dreams became a reality in 2016.

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Love, a widowed mother in Ghana, teamed up with Zidisha lenders to start a jewelry design business to support her family.

Love, a widowed mother in Ghana, teamed up with Zidisha lenders to start a jewelry design business to support her family.

 

Our loan cost ratio: 4.95%

In an industry where loan cost ratios of over 30% are the norm, we spent less than 5% of the value of loans funded on overhead and operating costs, such as money transfer fees, web development services and salaries.  Our lean web-based lending model means profits from the loans stay in the borrowers’ communities, rather than going to pay the lender’s overhead costs.

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This girl in Kenya is attending a quality school, thanks to profits generated by her mother’s Zidisha-funded peanut butter business.

 

Loans funded with a $100 lending account: $300

Thanks to recycling of repayments into new loans, a Zidisha lending account funds many times its original value in loan projects.

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A $194 loan was all Irwin needed to start a mushroom farm in Sulawesi, Indonesia.

A $194 loan was all Irwin needed to start a mushroom farm in Sulawesi, Indonesia.

 

Contributions to loans in Haiti: 986

Zidisha lenders were among the most rapid sources of resources to help people in Haiti rebuild their livelihoods after Hurricane Matthew.

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Zidisha lenders funded Lekol Haiti, a social enterprise that brings IT education to Haitian schools.

Zidisha lenders funded Lekol Haiti, a social enterprise that brings IT education to Haitian schools.

 

Number of borrowers who donated their time to coach new Zidisha members in their countries as Volunteer Mentors: 735

Volunteer Mentors are experienced, high-performing borrowers who mentor up to fifty new borrowers on how to successfully participate in the Zidisha community.

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Volunteers from around the world: 132

Our internationally distributed volunteer team handled everything from processing loan disbursements to sharing our most inspiring entrepreneur stories in social media.

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Number of Impact Investment Funds created: 238

We opened growth-enabled Impact Investment Funds to the public at the end of the year.  Over 200 new funds have since been created!

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Jude used his loan to scale up his clean drinking water distribution service.

Jude used his loan to scale up his clean drinking water distribution service in low-income neighborhoods of Ghana.

 

Installs of our new mobile app for borrowers: 4,988

We launched our first-ever mobile phone app in ten borrower countries in November, tapping into the recent spread of affordable smart phones in developing countries.

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Entrepreneurs profiled in our new Instagram page: 25 (and counting!)

To celebrate the rich diversity and inspiring accomplishments of our community, we’ve just inaugurated an Instagram collection featuring entrepreneurs’ stories in their own words. (Follow it here.)

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2016 has been our best year ever.  Help us make 2017 even better!  Make a loan to an entrepreneur today.

 

This school in Kenya is raising funds to build a classroom.

This school in Kenya is raising funds to build a classroom. Help them reach their goal!

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