Bidder’s Conference to Announce Request for Proposals on Innovative Financial Products and Services

November 2, 2015, Kathmandu – A Bidder’s Conference was organized by Sakchyam Access to Finance programme in coordination with Nepal Microfinance Bankers Association(NMBA), theumbrella organization of Microfinance Banks and Institutions in Nepal. The conference was one of many Sakchyam’s initiatives to trigger and forge meaningful partnerships with Micro Finance Institutions, an area that Sakchyam is looking to strengthen focus on in its second year of programme implementation, as a way to position the Micro Finance Industry with new innovations in the form of products and services.

The Bidder’s Conference set the stage for a call for Request for Proposals (Full Application) for the design, development, and rollout of innovative financial products and services to deepen the financial access for the un/underserved rural poor, women, youth and members of disadvantaged groups (DAGs) in Nepal. Sakchyam offers support to financial institutions through knowledge-sharing, technical assistance, and funding through its risk and cost sharing mechanism under the Sakchyam Challenge Fund program to tackle issues complicating access to finance in Nepal.

Sakchyam encouraged bidders to come up with cost-effective, affordable, accessible and efficient financial products, services and delivery mechanisms using innovative technologies and approach. Bidders can apply in collaboration with technology providers and other non-financial institutions. The Request for Proposals document (Full Application) can be obtained from Sakchyam’s website:www.sakchyam.com.np.

The launch of Sakchyam’s partnerships with MFIs such as UNYC Nepal, Vijay Laghubitta BittiyaSanstha, Nepal Women Community Service Centre, Kisan Micro Finance Bank, Kisan Co-operative, and Nirdhan Utthan Bank has resulted in the roll out of products and services such as expansion of service locations in rural areas, Tablet Banking, POS machine-supported services, Interactive Voice Response (IVR) messaging for financial literacy, and new loan products. The new programme year will see Sakchyam continue to forge new partnerships to introduce new innovations including Mobile Financial Services, Meso-Level Integrated Management Information System for the Micro Finance Industry, Break-Through Innovations in Insurance (particularly Micro-LifeInsurance and Weather-related IndexInsurance), and Transformative Remittance Products and Services.

The event was attended by Mr. Dharma Raj Pandey, Chairman, NMBA; senior representatives of leading Micro Finance Institutions of Nepal, industry leaders, Sakchyam senior leadership and members of the local media. Sakchyam Access to Finance Programme is an initiative funded by UK Aid and implemented for DFID Nepal by Louis Berger in partnership with local and international partner institutions.