In Benin, MicroLead worked with partners such as microfinance institution ALIDÉ, which is experimenting with the investment/return balance for linking savings groups. What is the minimum that financial service providers must invest to create and maintain a successful linkage with a savings group? And do savings groups need formal, direct financial education to succeed? Or might a media campaign explaining the linkage process suffice? Read more about how they're discovering the answer here, and watch this space for the case study to learn what they found out.

MicroLead partner Coopérative pour la Promotion de l'Epargne et du Crédit (CPEC) decided to create its own team of Susu collectors to provide doorstep banking in rural areas and expand access to finance. “Susu,” meaning “small-small,” is one of West Africa’s oldest methods for people to informally save small amounts of money. These private Susu, or “tontinier,” collectors go door-to-door, collecting daily savings, mainly from low-income populations. This model reduces collection costs for CPEC, and offers convenience and the security to rural clients. Based on that pilot, the MFIs apex is taking steps to extend agency banking practices to the remaining institutions in the country with MicroLead’s support. CPEC is featured in MicroLead's Digital Financial Services Toolkit #1 - Use Mobile as a Tool.

In addition to working directly with financial service providers, MicroLead has worked with Benin's industry as a whole, for example by hosting a digital finance training for financial institutions and stakeholders.

Read about the MicroLead-sponsored study visit to Benin and Cameroon here.

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