NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
A Kenyan microfinance company on Tuesday
officially launched the first mobile-based loans and savings
Bank, in conjunction with Airtel Money, a mobile money transfer
service owned by telecom operator Airtel, launched the new
mobile money solution that will enable customers to access loans
in less than two minutes.
“Since we rolled out
the product, over 50,000 new accounts have been opened in the
last one and a half weeks, out of which over 20,000 clients have
accessed loans,” Maisha Microfinance Bank CEO Ireneus Gichana
said during the launch in Nairobi.
The product, named
M-Fanisi, offers cash transfer from Airtel Money to clients’
account upon making a loan request and reverse of the same upon
There are 24 large
microfinance institutions in Kenya that provide approximately
1.5 million U.S. dollars worth of loans to over 1.5 million
active borrowers under different interest rates, duration and
Gichana said her
bank receives over 2,000 applications daily from people seeking
to access loans.
Kenya has one of the
highest financial inclusions in Africa, where the gap among
unbankable members of the population has narrowed from 20
percent in 2006 to 17 percent in 2016.