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As stated on the MYC4 platform at the moment it is, unfortunately, not possible to sign up or bid on loans as an investor on MYC4. This is due to MYC4’s decision to take a Timeout for uploads of new loans to borrowers in Kenya following a major dispute with one of our Provider partners in Kenya, KEEF, who have wrongfully decided to neglect their obligation to repay a large amount to MYC4 investors.

Until this situation has been normalized there will consequently be no Kenyan entrepreneurs benefiting from a loan through MYC4 and it makes no sense to allow existing or new investors to upload money which cannot benefit an African borrower.

In view of the fact that our investors are unable to bid on new loans, we have temporarily disabled the automatic inactivity fee until lending activities are restarted. Thank you for your continued support and for bearing with us.

Dear Stakeholders,
Unfortunately, MYC4 has been taken hostage by one of our Providers, KEEF, who had an internal fraud last summer and since then have not paid any of their clients’ loans on MYC4.
Nevertheless, KEEF continues to operate. This is the good aspect of the situation. The bad and reason for Time Out is that they are allegedly using the MYC4 investors funds to finance their activities and they claim that they have no obligations towards us.
It’s going to be an uphill battle with KEEF and as the sum outstanding is significant, nearly 900, 000 € plus interest since June. Understandably, MYC4 needs to utilize all available resources in our team for this.
Furthermore, KEEF have filed a claim in the court against MYC4 alleging that they have no obligations and went ahead to request that MYC4 be prohibited from communicating about them and the situation. We have taken legal counsel and will also prepare for criminal investigation of KEEF’s board and management for misuse and speculation of the investors funds. All contracts made between KEEF and MYC4 are very clear on this.
In parallel to this we have to recover the delayed payments from Uganda and Tanzania and also from Milango in Kenya. It all takes resources and as its our foremost priority to secure the investors of MYC4 funds we have taken this step for a Time Out.
Our team in Nairobi headed by Titus and Jes are doing all in their power to rectify the situation and the investors best interest.
Mads Kjaer
CEO & Co-founder

Below is an update on providers for the month of February.

Kenya Providers
Kenyan providers paid a total of 112,838.81 Euros in the month of February, below is a break-down of which provider paid what and the general overview of their performance;

KEEF –  Their PAR 30 currently stands at 62.0%. They hold a substantial amount of MYC4’s portfolio which defaulted a few months ago. There has been no cooperation from KEEF on all matters repayments for a while now. Attempts at talks to get them to honour their financial obligations have not borne fruit and MYC4 has sought legal action.

Keef

 

Milango – Their PAR 30 currently stands at 83.0 %. We received repayments from Milango amounting to Ksh 22,166.45 Euros. They are keen on their repayments and we have received another sum as recently as yesterday.

Milango

 

YEHU – Their PAR 30 currently stands at 0%. They made repayments amounting to 36,866.93 Euros. Yehu is doing well on and off the platform and their repayments are on track.

Yehu logo

 

Jubilant – Their PAR 30 currently stands at 0%. They made repayments amounting to 25,948.96 Euros. Jubilant is doing well on and off the platform and their repayments are on track.

Picture1

 

Premier Kenya – Their PAR 30 currently stands at 0%. They made repayments amounting to 53,805.43 Euros. We are also pleased to announce that we received the first repayment on Premier Kenya’s wholesale loan, a whole week earlier than the due date and at the end of their six month grace period on principal.

 

premier

Tanzania Providers

Tanzanian providers paid a total of 23,657.05 Euros in the month of February, below is a break-down of which provider paid what and the general overview of their performance;

Tanzania providers repaid as depicted below.

 

 

MtajiTanzania

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mtaji – Their PAR 30 currently stands at 0%. They made repayments amounting to 23,657.05. MYC4 recently entered into a  repayment agreement with Mtaji and the repayments are on track so far.

Tujijenge Tanzania – repaid their entire portfolio to MYC4 in this month and MYC4 wishes them all the best in their endeavors.

Uganda Providers

Uganda providers repaid a total of 9,892.30 Euros in the month, below is a breakdown;

 

 

TUGumf

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tujijenge Uganda -Their PAR 30 currently stands at 99.9%. They made repayments amounting to 9,892.30 Euros.

Uganda Microcredit Foundation - Their PAR 30 currently stands at 1.48%. We did not receive repayments from UMF for the month of February.

 

 

 

I have been to Kawangware several times, but still I can never find my way around. This suburb of Nairobi has its main roads, but once you leave them and step into to the maze of narrow alley ways you’re bound to get lost. It’s a breezy day in the dry season, and dust is in the air. In fact dust is everywhere, in your face, ears and nostrils. And on all the goods that are being sold here, vendors and shop keepers fight a hopeless struggle to keep the dust away. It seems that everybody is selling something, shops everywhere. Shops? Not necessarily shops as most people understand the concept: A room with windows, shelves and a door. Here a few square feet and a rough table is enough to set up shop. But there are also ordinary shops, you can get everything in Kawangware. The assortment can be limited, very limited. To mangos for example. Ah, the Kenyan mangos. My wife left for Denmark a week ago, she left half her clothes here and filled one side of her suitcase with the sweetest mangos on the planet.

I am my way to visit Elizabeth Waidhira, one of the shop owners.

Elizabeth, a MYC4 borrower at her Mpesa shop.

Elizabeth, a MYC4 borrower at her Mpesa shop.

With me are Caroline from MYC4’s office and branch manager Ezekiel from Premier Kenya. Elizabeth specializes in m-pesa, pesa meaning payment in Swahili, mobile payment, which is huge in Kenya, the country being a first mover in mobile payment. You’ll see m-pesa shops everywhere, also here and close to Elizabeth’s shop where people come to put money in their account. Actually she’s surrounded by other m-pesa shops, and I ask her, if it isn’t bad for her business.

– No, she says. Quite the contrary. Competition is good. That way you’ve got to be on your toes, it brings more customers! And on her toes she is this woman in her late forties and the mother of two and grandmother of one. She mentions her grandchild first, when I ask her about children. Obviously she’s proud and happy to be a grandmother. Working hours are from 7.30 AM till 6 PM. She has two employees in the little shop which also offers typing, photo copies and passport photos. Everybody has one weekly day off.

– Like with all people my life is up and down, says Elizabeth, whose husband works in the meat industry. – My mission is customer satisfaction! That’s the most important thing. If my customers are happy, I’m happy. I would also like to expand, I need more space. That’s my biggest challenge along with the dust, the rain and the mud.

She is on her first loan with Premier Kenya. It’s for 150.000 Kenyan Shillings (app. 1500 Euro). She didn’t spend it on her shop but on home improvement, a fence to be exact. She repays 15,500 Kshs a month and will be done with it in a year but doesn’t know if she wants a second one. It depends on the circumstances, and she finds the interest too high. I ask her if she thinks that she has a good life.

– Yes, I’m happy, I try to remember the good days.

Elizabeth (MYC4 borrower), Caroline (MYC4 Communication Officer) and Ezekiel (Premier Kenya Kawangware Branch Manager)

Elizabeth (MYC4 borrower), Caroline (MYC4 Communication Officer) and Ezekiel (Premier Kenya Kawangware Branch Manager)

We say goodbye to Elizabeth, so that she can get back to business. Ezekiel, Caroline and I walk back through the dusty streets to Premier Kenya’s office. It’s an experience to be here in Kawangware – every time, so lively and full of friendly people. Maybe you should visit next time you’re in Nairobi? I guarantee you’ll neither regret nor forget it.

We pass one of the mobile mango vendors, and I decide to do like my wife did. Leave some clothes behind and bring a sweet and tasteful part of Kenya with me back home.

“Education is for improving the lives of others and for leaving your community and world better than you found it. ” – Marian Wright Edelman.

Fountain Junior School, Kawangware.

Fountain Junior School, Kawangware.

Faith Kamande, the principal of Fountain Junior School in Kawangware is the perfect embodiment of this quote. She is an inspiring woman with a passion for education. I caught up with Faith during a busy school day and this is what she had to say:

How did you hear about MYC4?

I heard about MYC4 in 2014 through the Premier Kenya, my loan officer who explained to me how the loan works.

How has the MYC4 loan helped you?

It has helped me in running the school. I utilized quite a chunk of the money in doing repairs and the rest goes into operations such as wages.

IMAG0284 (2)

Fountain Junior Pupils during their break

What problem were you facing that MYC4 have helped you to solve since you received the funds?

I needed funds to facilitate the running of the school, I needed funds for equipment, food for the students, wages for teachers, repairs and the like.

What would you like people to know about MYC4?

The rates are fair.

MYC4 empowers people to achieve their targets. I am grateful to MYC4 and Premier Kenya for the opportunities they give entrepreneurs who may have a vision but need some support to achieve it.

Would you recommend MYC4 to your friends or family?

Yes, I would. I have enjoyed a good relationship with MYC4 and Premier Kenya.

Would you consider taking a second loan once you clear this loan?

Yes, I would. I have more plans do renovation and a vision to expand the school, preferably to larger premises with a larger field for co-curricular activities.

Do you have any additional comments?

Micro finance and loans help run and grow a lot of businesses. My school has grown from a small school and I plan to make it even larger. I think education is important, for all children. It opens up their minds and gives them opportunities they might not have gotten otherwise.

 

“When the history of African development is written, it will be clear that a turning point involved the empowerment of women.” – Sheryl Wudunn.

Several days ago I had the pleasure of meeting yet another mover and shaker in the micro finance industry. A man whose organization not only focuses on unshackling the community in the rural areas from poverty but also on empowering women in a patriarchal society. This inspiring man is none other than Adet Kachi, CEO of Yehu Microfinance Trust.

 

Adet Kachi, Yehu MFT CEO.

Adet Kachi, Yehu MFT CEO.

 

I had a one on one with Adet Kachi and this what he had to say;

Caroline: Hello Adet, tell me about Yehu Microfinance Trust.

Adet: Hello Caroline, well…

About Yehu Microfinance

Yehu logo

Yehu is predominantly rural based. It is a unique organization that has been brave enough to operate against challenges of poor infrastructure, low literacy levels and a poor economic environment of its clientele.

The organization is currently focused on serving the low income rural entrepreneurs and especially women within the Coastal region but eventually we plan to serve the ntire country.

In the rural areas, locals have challenges with accessing resources. It is not easy to access capital. There is the problem of inadequate infrastructure.

The community especially the women are marginalized and it is difficult to receive financial help. The Coast area is usually a patriarchal society and usually it is the men who hold economic leadership and dictate financial decisions.

This is where Yehu Microfinance Trust comes in. We seek to enhance their livelihoods and our vision is to take kenyans further than their circumstances allow them.

That sounds challenging, is it?

Well, we do experience some challenges. For instance some of our borrowers request small amounts of funds, but no matter the amount, we aim to deliver to our clients.

We go to the clients directly so you find our loan officers experience difficulties accessing the rural areas because of the underdeveloped infrastructure. They use all means necessary, be it bodabodas (motorcycles) or walking.

Additionally, at times some unavoidable circumstances, for instance terrorist attacks affect the clientele’s business directly and indirectly but with our support they manage to bounce back and avoid majority of the negative impact. It does have its challenges, but serving the people is an exciting and inspiring experience.

I am very much pleased with our contribution to society. Being able to empower people to live their destinies is an opportunity that not everyone is fortunate enough to achieve.

We are thankful when we are able to empower women. By empowering a woman, you add value to the household. Kofi Annan once said, “There is no tool for development more effective than the empowerment of women.”

How do you operate?

We are mostly in Coast province; Lamu, Voi, Mombasa and its environs. We have opened a new office in Makueni and we are moving to rural areas outside of Coast Province.

Yehu was created based on the principles and procedures of the world-renowned Grameen Bank and has adopted the Grameen Group Methodology.

There are policies in place to ensure that our clients continue smoothly with us. Yehu tries to establish very strong relationships with our clients.

All groups have assigned leaders and our loan officers support and guide these leader in managing their groups. We meet regularly with the group leaders for guidance and to hear any grievances and/or challenges they might be experiencing. We also conduct business training for our clients.

How is your partnership with MYC4?

We are pleased with our partnership with MYC4. Our clients are satisfied with the MYC4 loans they receive. We are  a team, when our clients have requests, we usually pass this on to our partner and we discuss and come with solutions that are favourable for all parties involved.

Conclusion

From my interview with Adet Kachi, I can tell he is a man of few words, but he makes the little he says count. It is also no secret that he is a well-respected,  highly experienced professional in his field. He is intelligent, resourceful, organized and passionate about empowering people, especially women.

This is great news for Kenyan women and the rural community in general. Yehu Microfinance Trust is destined for greatness because you can never go wrong when you take an active role in bringing positive change to the world.

 

 

 

 

MYC4 is pleased to announce that we received the first repayment on Premier Kenya’s wholesale loan, a whole week earlier than the due date and at the end of their six month grace period on principal.

In the 2nd Quarter of 2014, MYC4 announced the launch of its pilot of a new loan product;a wholesale product to complement the existing retail loans product.  It was a unique one being the first of its kind. The initial wholesale loan product was Euro denominated; thus transferring all currency risk to the micro finance institutions/ providers.

The loan product was to be well secured with collateral that included a Legal Pledge over the portfolio of the provider, Personal Guarantees by Directors and Debenture/ Legal mortgage over all the provider’s assets. MYC4 chose Premier Kenya Limited to pilot said product. The initial loan was 250,000 Euros at 8% interest, which was divided among investors and MYC4 at 50/50. The investor interest of 4% was considered attractive because investors would not suffer any currency loss, and there would be minimal default risk.

The Premier Kenya whole sale loan on the platform

The Premier Kenya whole sale loan on the platform

Premier Kenya used/is using this MYC4 wholesale loan to scale its retail, micro and small business client portfolio in Nairobi, specifically targeting SMEs and landlords who are providers of low cost housing. Premier focuses on SME and Group Lending with a particular focus on the provision of funds SME borrowers and to landlords that are providers of low-cost housing.

As the pilot was launched, Premier Kenya was working with Strathmore University to provide business skills training to its SME clients to enable them to enhance their businesses and ultimately borrow larger amounts for longer periods. Premier Kenya offers starting capital to persons with valid business ideas. These small and medium businesses are enabled to grow and hence the owners and employees are able to take care of their families.

MYC4 would like to have more of this hybrid lending where we can offer providers both retail loans and wholesale/ term loans. MYC4 wholesale loans empower small and medium business entrepreneurs who in turn create employment as well as boost the country’s economy which goes hand in hand with eradicating poverty.

Thanks to the pilot success of this great product, our investors can soon look forward to seeing and fundraising more of these wholesale loans on the platform.

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