Bangalore-based Grameen Koota has been selected as the Microfinance Organization of the Year (Large) 2015, at the 7th edition of the Microfinance India Awards. The Union Minister of State for Finance, Mr. Jayant Sinha, presented the award during the Inclusive Finance India Summit on Tuesday, December 8, 2015 at Hotel Ashok in New Delhi. The Award honours a microfinance organization, “which has stood the test of time, has combined growth with effective and efficient delivery of responsible microfinance services,” said the citation.
Instituted by ACCESS Development Services with support from HSBC, the award carries a cash prize of Rs.100,000 and a citation. In the last seven years since the Awards were first instituted, they have come to be highly respected within the sector and are highly coveted.
“The 2015 Microfinance Awards are truly deserved for which I recall a quote: ‘There are four pillars on which you can build the platform, to reach the zenith of success: Dedication, Devotion, Discipline and Determination’-- Lakkoju Gautam. This is truly exemplified by the Microfinance India awardees,” said Mr. Vipin Sharma, CEO of ACCESS Development Services.
The jury member and sector expert, Mr. N. Srinivasan, said, "At a time when the industry was witnessing moderate growth rate, Grameen Koota demonstrated an impressive growth without compromising on social development goals for the customer."
Grameen Koota Managing Director and CEO Mr. Udaya Kumar, who received the award, 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.
Founded in 1999 by Mrs Vinatha Reddy, inspired by the Grameen Bank model of Bangladesh by Prof. Muhammad Yunus, Grameen Koota is registered with the Reserve Bank of India under the NBFC-MFI category. While inaugurating their new corporate office in Bangalore recently, Prof. Yunus said, "During the microfinance crisis, I used to respond to media saying that there is good MFI and bad MFI and you should not mix both. I used to confidently cite Grameen Koota example as a good microfinance. They've stayed on the right course."
Grameen Koota is one of the early financial institutions in the world to have been honoured by Smart Campaign for having met all the client protection principles and again re-certified in October 2015. With a top rating of ‘mfR1’ by CRISIL, Grameen Koota has 1.1 million customers and an outstanding portfolio of Rs.1,680 crore.About Grameen Koota:
Grameen Koota Financial Services Pvt. Ltd. provides finance services to women from poor and low income households. The company offers income generation, home improvement, emergency, education, family welfare, and home construction loans; life and healthcare insurance products; and pension schemes, and non-financial services.
Grameen Koota was founded in 1999 and is headquartered in Bengaluru, India. With 298 branches spread across Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, Grameen Koota has 1.1 million customers, with an outstanding portfolio of over Rs.1,680 crore.
Grameen Koota has been awarded for re-certification by Smart Campaign for having met all the client protection principles. It is also one of the few MFIs to be awarded with Truelift Certification of ‘Achiever’s level’ and Social Rating of ∑α for its commitment on social performance and pro-poor business. Grameen Koota is one among the few with a top grade of ‘mfR1’ by CRISIL for its quality. It has been accorded a high Credit rating of ‘A-‘ by ICRA among MFIs in India.
Grameen Koota has been working with Joint Liability Groups formed exclusively of women belonging to poor and low income households by providing them with financial literacy and diverse credit products, catering all life-cycle needs such as income generation and access to water, sanitation, education, health care, home repairs, emergency loan etc. It gives its clients the option to repay weekly, fortnightly or monthly, depending on their cash flow and convenience. Grameen Koota’s social awareness campaign ‘Jagruti’ has become an important source of information across its women borrowers since 2011.
For more information, please visit: www.grameenkoota.org Photo Caption: Grameen Koota Managing Director and CEO Mr. Udaya Kumar receiving the 'Microfinance Organization of the Year 2015 Award' from the Minister of State for Finance, Mr. Jayant Sinha, on Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015, at the Inclusive Finance India Summit in New Delhi.