Grameen Koota Updates
Grameen Koota Partners with Fintech Firm Artoo
February 14, 2017: Grameen Koota has partnered with FinTech firm Artoo to develop a digital lending model to launch individual business loans. Grameen Koota’s Individual Lending vertical will be the first to be provided on a digital platform, right from loan origination to disbursement. Using Artoo’s Intelligent Digital Loan Origination System, borrowers will be informed about their loan approval status within 40 minutes by the loan officer. Artoo leverages Aadhaar, Big Data and Analytics to enable lending to a borrower with a limited digital footprint, which is integral to Grameen Koota’s entry into Individual Lending. Grameen Koota is launching this product in 15 branches initially, with an estimated portfolio reach of Rs.70 Cr in the first 12 months.
Grameen Koota MD Elected to MFIN Board
November 1, 2016: Grameen Koota Managing Director and CEO Mr. Udaya Kumar has been elected as a director to the Board of Microfinance Institutions Network (MFIN), the industry's self-regulatory body. Mr. Kumar will serve on the Board of MFIN for three years. He will work with the MFIN team on possible advocacies with the regulators, government, lenders and other stakeholders to strengthen the industry and its members. “I'm looking forward to contributing towards strengthening the mission of MFIN to serve the industry and its members,” said Mr Kumar.
Grameen Koota has been associated with MFIN since its formation in 2009. Mr. Kumar is also on the board of the state self-regulatory body AKMI (Association of Karnataka Microfinance Institutions) as Secretary since September 2015.
Grameen Koota Jagruti Reaches Many on Chandana TV
October 7, 2016: A special program on breast cancer and cervical cancer was aired on Doordarshan Chandana from 3rd October till 7th October, 2016, sponsored by Grameen Koota under its Jagruti Initiative. The broadcast coincided with the Breast Cancer Awareness Month observed in October throughout the world. It featured medical experts Dr. Jayanthi Tumse, Oncologist and Dr. Hema Diwakar, Gynaecologist, explaining the breast and cervical cancer.
The program, coordinated by Mahathi Media, was aimed at creating awareness among the general public about the disease, particularly the customers of Grameen Koota and other Microfinance Institutions in Karnataka.
‘Jagruti’ is a persona initiated by Grameen Koota for its client education program to spread awareness among its customers by narrating the experiences through engaging stories during the weekly meetings covering topics ranging from Financial Literacy, Health, Education, Sanitation to Disease Prevention and Women’s Safety.
Grameen Koota Reaches 15 Lakh Customers
August 1, 2016: Grameen Koota has reached another milestone in the month of August when it widened the customer base to more than 15 lakh customers and crossed the portfolio mark of Rs.3,000 Cr. “This is another important accomplishment. Recently, we have crossed 15 lakh customers and also within one year of expansion, we have crossed 1 lakh customers in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. These are very important milestones in the history of Grameen Koota and you are all the architects,” said Grameen Koota Managing Director and CEO, Mr Udaya Kumar in his message to all staff members.
Grameen Koota Lifts Super Max 8s Cricket Cup 2016
July 23, 2016: Grameen Koota lifted the 14th Supermax 8s Cup in Inter Corporate Cricket Tournament, after a thrilling match on Saturday, with a superb partnership between Dhanush and Vinay, scoring 50 together. The final was held on Saturday at the SPT Sports Academy, in which Schneider Electric scored 98 runs with no loss in 12 overs, leaving a target of 99 for Grameen Koota to chase.
Grameen Koota Crosses Portfolio of Rs. 2,500-Cr Mark
April 1, 2016: Grameen Koota has achieved the target of crossing Rs.2,500 Cr-mark in March 2016, compared to Rs.1,449.7 Crore recorded as of March 31, 2015. The addition of more than Rs.1,000 crore came as determined field staff and the management worked in concert to reach out to 1.4 million customers in five states.
Thanking the staff and stakeholders, Managing Director and CEO Mr. Udaya Kumar said: “We have achieved a new milestone by crossing Rs.2,500 crore in terms of our outstanding portfolio and 14 lakh women household customers while closing the financial year. Our 14 lakh customers are main pillars of our success. These achievements are possible due to all those women who stood with us all the time. I thank all our field staff, supervisory staff, all enabling teams from head office and our Senior Management team for ensuring a successful financial year with enthusiasm and dedication. My sincere thanks to the Board of Directors, Investors, Lenders and all our stakeholders for their constant support in our journey to reach new heights.”
Grameen Koota Awarded MIX 2015 S.T.A.R. Recognition
Feb 1, 2016: Grameen Koota gets S.T.A.R. recognition for the second time by global organization MIX (Microfinance Information Exchange) in recognition of its commitment to being socially transparent and responsible MFI. The MIX 2015 Socially Transparent and Responsible (S.T.A.R.) microfinance institution (MFI) recognition to Grameen Koota entails that the MFI is aligned with both the USSPM (Universal Standards for Social Performance Management) and green microfinance principles as measured by MIX’s Social Performance indicators.
"MIX congratulates Grameen Koota Financial Services Private Limited for its commitment to being socially transparent and responsible. We recognize Grameen Koota Financial Services Private Limited for completing MIX’s social performance desk review process and successfully meeting all 2015 S.T.A.R. requirements," said MIX in its citation.
Grameen Koota had received the S.T.A.R. recognition in 2013 too. In India, MIX collaborated with ACCESS Development Services to liaise with and collect documents from the Indian MFIs that have submitted SP profile information to MIX. Known as "Desk Review Process", 73 MFIs participated and more than 60 percent of the SP indicators they reported have been documented. Grameen Koota was accorded 100% compliance this year by MIX.
SMERA Upgrades Grameen Koota's COCA Rating
March 1, 2016: The rating agency SMERA has assigned the top MFI Code of Conduct Assessment (COCA) Rating of 'ÇOCA 1' defining “Very High Level of Adherence” to Grameen Koota, upgrading it from the previous rating of 'ÇOCA 2' or “High Level of Adherence”, on a six-point scale given to the MFI industry.
Grameen Koota's adherence to the code of conduct guidelines as laid down by MFIN, Sa-Dhan, and fair practices guidelines by multilateral agencies and Reserve Bank of India, was evaluated by SME Rating Agency (SMERA) on broad parameters including Client Origination & Targeting, Loan Pricing & Transparency, Loan Appraisal, Privacy of Client Information, Staff Behaviour & Client Grievance Handling, Integrating Social Values into Operations, Relationship Management & Feedback Mechanism and Compliance Status of MFI vis-à-vis the Recent RBI Guidelines.
The new rating entails recognition that Grameen Koota has a "Very High Level of Adherence" to all these parameters of code of conduct laid down by regulators and towards ethical operational practices. The graph below shows performance score of Grameen Koota on different parameters:
Grameen Koota Honoured with Microfinance India 2015 Award
Dec. 8, 2015: Grameen Koota was honoured with the industry’s top award as the “Microfinance Organization of the Year (Large) 2015” at the 7th edition of the Microfinance India Awards, during the Inclusive Finance India Summit on December 8, 2015. Instituted by ACCESS Development Services with support from HSBC, the award carries a cash prize of Rs.100,000 and a citation.
Receiving the prestigious award, Grameen Koota Managing Director and CEO Mr. Udaya Kumar said: “All these are possible only with strong and continuous support from our customers and employees, especially those who serve at the field every day. And an unstinted support from our Board of Directors, Management Team, Lenders and Regulators helped us in shaping Grameen Koota. It is a matter of great pride that our commitment to customers and our commitment to financial inclusion is being recognised.”
Grameen Koota Gets Smart Campaign Certification Check-in
Dec. 8, 2015: Grameen Koota has been awarded the Smart Campaign Certification check-in for its adherence to Client Protection Principles (CPP) and the certification was handed over to the team led by its MD and CEO Mr. Udaya Kumar on the side-lines of the Inclusive Finance India Summit on December 8, 2015 in New Delhi.
Grameen Koota Cuts Interest Rates
Nov. 1, 2015: Grameen Koota has cut its interest rate by 2 percentage points for education, water and sanitation loans. With this Grameen Koota borrowers will get education, water and sanitation loans at 20%, a significant reduction of 2% from 22% they were charged earlier.
The new rates of interest came into effect from November 1, 2015. Earlier, Grameen Koota had reduced the core income generating loan rate by 1% from 25% to 24%, effective from October 12, 2015. This is the second interest rate cut by Grameen Koota since May 2014.
Grameen Koota Posts Half-Yearly Results, Net Profit Up
Oct. 12, 2015: Grameen Koota has posted a net profit of Rs.42.93 crore for the first six months period ended September 30, 2015, showing more than 90% increase from Rs.22.49 crore recorded last year for the corresponding period that ended on Sept.30, 2014. Filed before the regulator, Grameen Koota’s half-yearly results showed that the total income in six months stood at Rs.212.17 crore as of Sept.30, 2014, up from Rs.124.79 crore in the corresponding period last year. The Capital Adequacy Ratio increased from 27.39% to 28.45%.
Grameen Koota Provides Shelters to Gangavati Customers
Nov. 3, 2015: Grameen Koota Gangavati Branch has helped some customers in Kerangal area in Kampli when they were re-located in a land given by the government after evacuating them for road-expansion. Since the customers were in urgent need of a temporary shelter, Grameen Koota local branch provided housing materials to about 70 such customers. Area Manager Mr. Vijay Kumar has taken the initiative to help customers and also rescheduled the loan repayment of customers to avoid pressure of loan instalments.
Grameen Koota MD & CEO Udaya Kumar Elected to AKMI Body
Sept. 12, 2015: Grameen Koota Managing Director and CEO Udaya Kumar has been elected as Secretary to the state self-regulatory body AKMI (Association of Karmataka Microfinance Institutions). AKMI promotes community development finance in rural Karnataka and India through dialogue, capacity building and stakeholder engagement. In their meeting held on Sept. 12, 2015 in Bangalore, the members of the AKMI body have elected new office bearers.
Grameen Koota Shifts to New Address
Sept. 21, 2015 : Grameen Koota has shifted the corporate office to a new building in Jayanagar, reflecting the new vision and expansion of the organization catering to more than a million customers. The new address of Grameen Koota will be as below: Grameen Koota Financial Services Private Limited, 2nd Floor, #49 (Old No. 725), 46th Cross, Next to Rajalakshmi Kalyana Mantapa,Jayanagar 8th Block, Bangalore-560071. (Phone: 080-30418100).
Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus Inaugurates Our New Corporate Office
Sept. 5, 2015 : World-renowned Nobel Laureate and father of micro-credit Muhammad Yunus inaugurated the new corporate office of Grameen Koota in Jayanagar, Bangalore on September 5, 2015. Regarded as the father of micro-credit, Prof.Yunus has founded the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh that has enriched millions of poor households. He was honoured with the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006.
Grameen Koota Implements Temenos Core Banking System (CBS)
August 31, 2015 : Grameen Koota has introduced a new Core Banking System (CBS), T24, to offer stable support for the company’s planned expansion of operations and product range. T24 is the CBS product provided by Temenos, a well known Banking Technology solutions provider. This project was spearheaded by the Information technology (IT) team at Grameen Koota, in partnership with Tech Mahindra and Temenos. T24 was released on August 31, 2015 after 9 months of testing and it will enhance productivity of branch staff by streamlining and simplifying data entry, for all loan portfolio and accounting transactions in one system, said Arun Kumar B, Head of Information Technology, Grameen Koota.
Grameen Koota Reaches Milestone with 1 Million Microfinance Customers
Grameen Koota has reached a new milestone of 1 million microfinance customers, in a testimony to its strong client-centric approach aimed at providing holistic financial and social services.Grameen Koota, with 3,000 employees working in 270 branches spread across Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, reached one million customers with a portfolio of Rs.1, 602 as of 30th June 2015. As part of its future mission, Grameen Koota has been striving to reach over 2 million poor and low income households through financial products and development services by 2020.
Grameen Koota crosses Rs 1000 Cr portfolio
On 24th of Nov.2014, Grameen Koota (GK) once again made history by crossing Rs 1000 Cr portfolio, a new milestone was reached.
Grameen Koota has grown by leaps and bounds, exactly one year back we were standing at Rs. 524 Cr. and within a year we have crossed Rs 1000 Cr. And the icing on the cake was, till date, GK has disbursed over Rs. 5000 Cr. and has written off only around Rs.10 Cr., out of which we have already recovered Rs.2.78 Cr, which is also a great achievement for our organization.
This land mark occasion, which is the result of continuous support from our team and most importantly our clients, was celebrated across all the GK branches including its Head office in Bangalore and Maharashtra’s main office in Pune.
Mr Suresh Krishna gets re-elected as a Director of MFIN for the 4th time
Mr. Suresh Krishna, the Managing Director of Grameen Koota, was re-elected as a Director of Microfinance Institutions Network (MFIN) for the 4th consecutive time, during its fifth AGM held in the month of June 2014. Along with him, Mr. Samit Ghosh, the CEO and Managing Director of Ujjivan Financial Services, got re-elected as the President of MFIN and Mr. V. S. Radhakrishnan of Janalakshmi Financial Services, as the Vice-President.
Mr. K. Paul Thomas (ESAF Microfinance and Investment), Mr. Manoj Kumar Nambiar (Arohan Financial Services), Mr. Anand Rao (Chaitanya India Fin Credit), and Mr. R. Baskar Babu (Suryodaya Micro Finance), are the other MFIN Board members who also got elected. /p>
Grameen Koota’s WatSan Project creates a record
Grameen Koota through its NGO Affiliate ‘Navya Disha’, in association with Water.org, has been implementing Water & Sanitation Program in Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu since 2009, to provide its clients with easy access to safe drinking water and sanitation facilities by providing water connection and sanitation loans.
Under the water & sanitation program, Grameen Koota has crossed cumulative disbursement of Rs. 100 crore as on 31st May 2014 towards water & sanitation loans. Since 2009, 88111 households have been supported to construct sanitation systems, 49636 households have been supported to get access clean drinking water connections, impacting 688735 people. Various training programs from Masons, awareness programs in rural & urban areas, panchayati members trainings have been conducted to bring about change in the sanitation coverage.
Grameen Koota’s portfolio crosses over Rs. 800 Cr and reaches above 5.50 Lac clients
For Grameen Koota the financial year of 2013-14 was quite eventful. Apart from being recognised and honoured by various national and international institutions for its work, it marked yet another milestone in its growth chart by touching its all-time high portfolio as targeted by the organization for the year.
The company's outstanding loans as on March 31st 2014 stood at Rs. 809.5 Cr., up by 54% from last financial year’s Rs. 523.9 Cr., making it a Rs. 200 Cr plus Net worth company. It crossed the projected loan disbursement amount of Rs. 820 Cr. for FY2014 by disbursing Rs. 1, 028 Cr. to its clients while maintaining the repayment rate at 99.9%. The organization’s reach also extended from 3.81 Lakh members in FY 2013 to 5.68 Lakh members in FY2014, another notch up by 49%.
Grameen Koota announces raising Rs 80 Cr in its fifth round of equity infusion
Grameen Koota gave its new financial year a jump-start by raising Rs 80 Crores in its fifth round of equity funding from one of its existing investors – MicroVentures.
This capital infusion will enable the company to expand its operations into newer geographies and reach more number of poor & low income households with microfinance. The company will continue to focus on social impact and envisions becoming the most preferred MFI in the areas it operates.
Grameen Koota Raises 61 Cr through Secured, Rated, Redeemable, Listed Non-Convertible Debentures
In the month of February 2014, Grameen Koota received Rs. 61 Cr in total through NCDs from MicroVest Short Duration Fund (Rs. 31 Cr) and responsAbility Investments AG (Rs. 30 Cr).
Grameen Koota at the 10th Annual Microfinance India Summit
During the Microfinance India Summit 2013 in Delhi on 9th and 10th Dec. 2013, Mr Suresh Krishna representing Grameen Koota participated as one of the panelists in the stimulating panel discussion on the significance and importance for client protection titled, “Client Protection for Financial Inclusion: The Way Forward in India,” convened by ACCESS and spoke about his experience as one of the first certified MFIs in India and the importance of Smart Campaign certification. Read more on, http://www.microfinanceindia.org/
Grameen Koota at the European Microfinance Week
Mr Suresh Krishna, Managing Director, Grameen Koota participated in a session on Microfinance and housing as one of the panellists at the European Microfinance Week, an annual conference in the Abbaye de Neumünster, held in Luxembourg from 12th to 14th November 2013. The theme of this year’s event was “The Future of Microfinance – Investing in Inclusive Growth”.
Grameen Koota Receives Rs.50 Cr NCDs from Triodos Investment Management, Netherlands
On 25th Nov.2013, Grameen Koota received Rs.50 Cr through rated, secured, transferable, redeemable, listed non-convertible debentures (NCDs) from Triodos Fair Share Fund and Triodos Microfinance funds managed by Triodos Investment Management, which will enable Grameen Koota to further its goal of supporting women micro entrepreneurs from rural areas with microfinance services.
Grameen Koota upgrades self into a NBFC-MFI
Grameen Koota was taken to another level by getting reclassified into a regulated and governed Non-Banking Financial Company - Micro Finance Institutions (NBFC-MFI) entity by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in the month of September 2013.
Grameen Koota on an International Platform
Mr Suresh Krishna, Managing Director, Grameen Koota participated in a session on Finance and Housing as one of the panellists at the Microcredit Summit hosted by the Microcredit Summit Campaign and the Microfinance Council of the Philippines Inc. in Manila from 9-11 October 2013 focusing on the theme ‘Partnerships against Poverty.
Hollywood actor and Water.org founder Matt Damon visits one of Grameen Koota’s WatSan projects
On 26th Aug, Hollywood superstar and founder of water.org Matt Damon visited one of Grameen Koota’s WatSan projects. Water.org has been Grameen Koota’s partner since 2009 and the non-profit organization aims to reach out to over 8 lakh people by 2016 with its water credit initiative with microfinance institutions like Grameen Koota. The actor interacted with a few clients and beneficiaries of the WatSan project in Arundhati Nagar, before inaugurating the new water tap connection at Hampinagar branch in Bangalore. Damon was interested in understanding the problems faced prior to having water connections. He was also curious to find out if the WatSan project has actually benefitted the clients.
Senior Management Tour to Grameen Bank in Bangladesh
6 members of the Grameen Koota senior management team were part of a one week study tour ( July 10th-July 16th) and as part of the tour, they visited Cashpor Financial Services in Varanasi and Bandhan Financial Services in Kolkata. The team spent 2 days at these institutions to understand their field operations, systems and structure. Since the geography & demographics are very different from that of where Grameen Koota operates, the team were exposed to some unique practices in these institutions. For instance, in the absence of computers in their branches, Cashpor has developed a very innovative mobile based solution for efficient field collections and tracking of disbursements at the branch, while on the other hand Bandhan has some extremely interesting non-financial products like targeting Hard-Core Poor (THP), Health camps and Primary school facilities aimed at their members.
Grameen Koota’s senior management also visited Grameen Bank in Bangladesh to understand the current models being followed there. They were exposed to the existing challenges faced by Grameen Bank in the present regulatory environment as well as the different financial products being offered by the bank to the poor & low income households in Bangladesh. They also spent time at the Nobel museum at Grameen Bank head office showcasing the Nobel Peace prize received by Professor Muhammad Yunus & Grameen Bank in 2006.
Mr Suresh Krishna re-elected as a director of MFIN for the 3rd Time
Managing director Suresh Krishna was re-elected as a director of Microfinance Institutions Network (MFIN) for the 3rd consecutive time. Samit Ghosh, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Ujjivan, has been elected president of the Microfinance Institutions Network (MFIN). In the new board of directors for the apex body of NBFC-Microfinance institutions formed after the elections in the fourth AGM held recently, C.S Ghosh, Founder & CEO, Bandhan was elected as the vice-president. The other board members include P Kishore Kumar of Trident Microfin, Govind Singh CEO and MD of Utkarsh Microfinance, K Paul Thomas ESA Microfinance, Manoj Kumar Nambiar, MD Arohan Financial Services, V. S Radhakrishnan MD & CEO Janalakshmi Financial Services and Sameer Nanavati, MD & CEO, Disha Microfin.
Grameen Koota Chairperson Vinatha M Reddy conferred with the Citizen Extraordinaire Award
Chairperson of Grameen Koota, Mrs Vinatha M Reddy, was awarded the Citizen Extraordinaire award from the Rotary Club of Bangalore. Vinatha M Reddy was presented the award for her inspiring and commendable work in the field of empowering women and ensuring that women become economically independent. Mrs Reddy’s leadership enabled Grameen Koota since 1999 to serve more than 4 lakh women across 3 states of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu with financial and diverse developmental services.
Speaking on the award, Chairperson Grameen Koota, Mrs Vinatha M Reddy, said, “I am honored to receive this award since it underlines and applauds the importance of our work at Grameen Koota. Today as I accept the award, I can truly say that it also belongs to the women borrowers of Grameen Koota who through their hard work, their spirit and their trust-worthiness have made our work not only successful but very meaningful. ” The Citizen Extraordinaire Award instituted by the Rotary Club of Bangalore is conferred upon those individuals who have offered a greater part of their lives to a cause that they believe in and who have with their work become pioneering beacons of hope, trust and faith. The award appreciates the work of Mrs Reddy and believes that her work mirrors the work of Rotary worldwide that of bringing succor to those who need it and thereby work towards making the world a better place.
The earlier recipients of the award include Narayan Murthy, Dr. Darshan Shankar, Arundhati Nag, Dr Krishna Bhargava; scientists CNR Rao, UR Rao, Satish Dhawan and G Padmanabhan; sportsmen Prakash Padukone, and Anil Kumble; administrators N Lakshman Rao and Dr A Ravindra; musician R K Srikantan; and social workers Hema Iyengar, Suresh Heblikar and Latha Jagannathan.
Extending Grameen Koota’s safe drinking endeavour
With a view to accomplishing Grameen Koota’s social endeavour to help clients access clean and safe drinking water, resulted in tying up with Hindustan Unilever Limited for the Water Pureit program in March 2012, wherein till date, 5367 water purifier units have been installed to promote safe drinking among our clients. To extend the same service to diverse branches, the staff of 6 branches including Kaggalipura, Ramanagara, Mandya, Channarayapatna, Nagamangala and Mysore participated in an orientation program in association with HUL to familiarize our staff in the aforementioned branches with the Pureit product. The safe drinking water program will soon be launched in the above mentioned branches to facilitate clients with financial support to purchase water purifiers. Our partner HUL will further ensure delivery, installation and maintenance of the product at the client’s residence.
Launch of Intranet
Grameen Koota launched its intranet on the 29th of April in order to streamline the access to internal and external information. The basic objective behind the intranet is to improve communication, enhance collaboration and coordination between branches and the headquarters along with enabling the capturing and sharing of knowledge. The Intranet will also serve as repository of all organisational and sector related reports, studies and researches.
Grameen Koota at the 4th Indo-German Business Forum
The 4th Indo-German Business Forum held in the German city of Dusseldorf, on the 6th of September had Grameen Koota MD Suresh Krishna speak on the models and tools used to measure inclusive growth. He also discussed how social media could be used as an instrument to measure social impact.
Enhancing Grameen Koota’s healthcare services for our clients
Adhering to Grameen Koota's committment towards its social goal, health care services were initiated in December 2011 under the program called SNDPAP in two districts in Karnataka. The success of the program ensured the extension of the program to the entire state of Karnataka to service our clients in a better manner. Within 12-15 months of the program's inception, all our clients in Karnataka could avail this facility. So far 1,96,876 beneficiaries have enrolled for health care services and around 50,000 members have availed for subsidized outpatient benefits, while 4,830 members availed hospitalization benefits.
To further enhance our healthcare services, Grameen Koota and SAS have tied up with L&T insurance company to provide medical insurance services to our clients along similar lines of our erstwhile SNDPAP program under the name “My Health Group Medisure Insurance”, wherein Grameen Koota will undertake the enrolments of beneficiaries on behalf of L&T Insurance and SAS will continue to service the customers with their own Sakhi network in the network hospitals.