Region and country of operations: Asia, Pakistan
Jurisdiction of registration: Pakistan
Business sector: Microfinance
Date of agreement (month/year): 12/2020
Finnfund’s financing: USD 10,000,000
Share of Finnfund’s financing: max 8%
Size of project/financing: Total balance sheet approx. USD 150 million (December 2020)
Environmental and social category: FI-B
Kashf Foundation (Kashf) is one of Pakistan’s leading specialised microfinance institutions which aims to economically mainstream and empower women in Pakistan by demonstrating that there is a business case for women’s entrepreneurs.
Kashf Foundation was established in 1996 with the objective of alleviating poverty and empowering women in the urban and suburban areas of Pakistan. Kashf has transformed its status from an NGO to a not for profit company in February 2007 and got the license of NBMFI in October 2016 from the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP).
Kashf offers a suite of innovative and transformative products and services to low-income households especially women. Kashf offers appraisal backed individual lending and microinsurances to its clients along with other non-financial services to have a transformative impact at the household level.
Finnfund sees that Kashf Foundation’s activities contribute to SDG5 (promoting gender equality) and, therefore, financing to the company qualifies as a gender project for the 2X Challenge.
Main development impact
Pakistan has high levels of financial exclusion, especially gendered financial exclusion, and low levels of economic development, which creates a need to support low-income households, especially women, with access to finance for economic empowerment.
Kashf Foundation offers women centric and pro-poor access to financial services which promote economic growth, reduce income inequality, improve access to health and nutrition, and empower women through an enhanced role in household decision making. Kashf aims to expand its outreach to 1 million customers over the next 3 years.