Product Diversification in Microfinance: Introducing Individual Lending

  • Date Posted: June 2, 2010
  • Authors: Hans Dellien, Jill Burnett, Anna Gincherman, Elizabeth Lynch
  • Organizations: Women's World Banking
  • Document Types: Guidance, Technical Report
  • Donor Type: Non-Governmental Organization

This report is a valuable aid for the rising number of microfinance institutions (MFIs) that previously have lent only to groups of clients, but now want to serve individual borrowers as well. MFIs want to make this move, to satisfy growing client demand and become more competitive in an increasingly crowded market. The shift toward individual lending affects almost every aspect of an MFI, making it critical that management and staff be aware of the challenges involved in restructuring their organization.

Included in this report is practical guidance along with sections on the three recommended stages of product rollout (planning, implementation and evaluation) as they relate to individual lending; questionnaires that guide microfinance institutions through the three stages; case studies of institutions that have converted or are in the process of converting to individual lending; and a focus not only on technical preparedness, but also on the soft factors that accompany institutional transformation, such as staff attitude.