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    Improve food security with satellite data in Burundi

     

    Today, AUXFIN announced that the Netherlands Space Office has selected GAP4A, Good Agricultural Practices For ALL for funding within the third call of the Geodata for Agriculture and Water (G4AW) Facility. In this Project Good Agricultural Practices for All. The AgriCoach app will provide 100,000 smallholder farmers in the provinces Gitega, Kayanza and Karusi with information on a) WHAT crop to plant (Crop Selector); b) WHEN to plant and implement crop management practices throughout the season (Seasonal Monitor); and c) HOW to do this for optimal results (Best Practices database). The solutions will be developed and are implemented in this project from 2018 to 2020 by a consortium of dedicated partners consisting of AUXFIN international, Waterwatch Projects, AUXFIN Burundi, Réseau Burundi 2000+, eLEAF, Weather Impact and Nextview.

    The combination of strong local knowledge and presence with expertise on geodata, weather, and business development provides a unique opportunity to develop services that really matter for smallholder farmers in Burundi.

    To view the press release please click this
    Download PDF AUXFIN Press Release

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    NUMHERIT and AUXFIN sign interoperability agreement

     

    CEO of AUXFIN, Mr. Cornelis Heesbeen and Mr. Mamadou Toure, Managing Director of Numherit

    AUXFIN and NUMHERIT signed an interoperability agreement to enable sending and receiving funds between the wallets of their platforms. Users of the PosteCash and UMVA services will be able to transfer money between the respective accounts (interoperability). This agreement was formalized on June 16, 2017, during the celebration of the International Day of Family Remittances at the GFRiD2017 in New York.

    To view the press release please click this
    Download PDF NUMHERIT Press Release

     
    UFM LOUGA joined the UMVA Platform

    UFM Louga contracted AUXFIN to connect all its branches and all its members to the UMVA platform. After a first small pilot project in 2012, AUXFIN began scaling the UMVA service in collaboration with its partners U-IMCEC, CASC and MECSEF. The UMVA service connects senders and beneficiaries of remittances and the microfinance sector. It allows Senegalese living in Europe to manage their savings online in Senegal; it allows beneficiaries to better manage the funds they receive; all this for a very low fixed monthly fee. Following this agreement with UFM Louga the platform adds another network of service points to the platform, especially in the Louga region, which is characterized by a high degree of migration.

    Mr. Mansour Ndiaye, Founder and Director of UFM Louga: "We are pleased to team up with AUXFIN and its partners. The Louga region is characterized by migration and many of our family members live abroad, mostly in Italy, France and Spain. As an institution of reference in this region, we are obliged to bring innovative solutions to respond to the needs of our members and UMVA is an excellent example of such a solution. Therefore, we decided to invest in UMVA and we have huge expectations of our combined efforts to serve our common customers.”

    The CEO of AUXFIN, Mr. Cornelis Heesbeen, said: ”We share the vision and mission of UFM Louga and are excited about this agreement, which allows us to enhance our offer to the Senegalese Diaspora and their family members in Senegal. Once more, through the UMVA platform, members are enabled to make better use of their funds, according to their individual or collective needs and priorities."


    UFM LOUGA
    UFM Louga is a mutual network specialized in rural finance and works closely with farmers' organizations in the Louga region. It has 20 service points, almost 14,000 members, a savings volume of 444 million FCFA and a credit portfolio of 820 million FCFA.

    To view the press release please click this
    Download PDF UFM LOUGA Press release in English

    Download PDF UFM LOUGA Press release in French

     

     500.000th registration in the UMVA Platform in Burundi

    Today, AUXFIN announced that it made the 500.000th registration in Burundi last week. This work is related to the larger Fertilizer project in Burundi of PAN- PNSEB supported by IFDC, the total project aims to connect 1.2 million (members) families. The registration is on-going and today 45% of the families (population) in Burundi have been reached.

    To view the press release please click this
    Download PDFPress release 500.000 clients Burundi


    NIOKOBOK enhances its accessibility with UMVA

    Today NIOKOBOK and AUXFIN agreed to join forces and introduce UMVA as a method of payment for purchases on NIOKOBOK.COM. This allows UMVA members to pay for any purchases made on NIOKOBOK.COM without any additional cost and without the need to have a bank account or credit card.

    To view the press release please click this
    Download PDFPress release Niokobok AUXFIN

     
    AUXFIN to deliver insurances with Partnership of ASKIA

    Today ASKIA ASSURANCES and AUXFIN launch an innovative solution to provide easy online access to insurance. The solution as well as the insurance offer is tailor-made for Senegalese abroad and their family members in Senegal and will be made available through AUXFIN’s UMVA platform.

    To view the press release please click this
    Download PDFCommunique de presse Askia AUXFIN

    Download PDFPress Release Askia AUXFIN

     

    Remittances market in the Netherlands, a report of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    Download the full report :

    Amsterdam, January 2014

    by:
    Daniëllea de Winter (DBM research)
    Laudra Archangel (LAC!Support)
    Gerd Junne (The Network University)
    Jane Martie Chatlein (former Director of IntEnt)

    Members of the steering committee were Lidy Navis, Jaap Smit, and
    Richard Dons from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Meike Kramer from the Dutch Ministry of
    Finance, Ayse Zoodsma (DNB), Marc van der Maarel  (NVB), and Vyash Misier from the Dutch Association of Money Transfer Institutions (NVGTI) In addition, Nanette Farwerck (INTL Global
    Currencies Ltd)

    On page 73 and 74 UMVA is mentioned as an innovative product:

    However, another innovative online scheme that allows remittances at almost no cost between senders and receivers connected to the system would be AUXFIN, which also contributes to positive development by creating incentives for community mobilization and allowing to trace not only monetary payments, but also the flows of commodities

    AUXFIN’s UMVA value registration system

    A recent creation is AUXFIN, a highly innovative formula for “banking the unbanked”. It allows the transfer of remittances at almost no cost via the UMVA online value registration and management system. At the same time, it contributes to  

    - financial inclusion of migrants on the one side and of remittances recipients on the other,

    - increased cooperation and social cohesion within migrant organizations as well as local institutions,

    - spreading ICT and financial literacy,

    - assuring a high level of information on senders and recipients,

    - allowing better insight into the use of remittances,

    - fighting corruption at the sending and the receiving end,

    - and increasing transparency of all transactions and thus the trust among the different actors involved.

    The system has been tested with remittances from Senegalese migrants in Spain to their home country, and large scale applications are presently on their way in Burundi and in the DRC Congo. In Burundi, about 1.2 million farmers will be connected to the system, which is also used to administrate the distribution of fertilizer to the farmers.

    At the core of the system is the UMVA platform, which allows private persons and organizations to open an account In any kind of organization that works at the rural level. The account can be used to send money to all other account holders within the system. The account holder thus obtains ownership rights to part of a corresponding account in a commercial bank, which is owned either by an association or foundation in the sending or the receiving country.

    Money is sent within the system by transferring amounts from one UMVA account (e.g. in the sending country) to another UMVA account (e.g. in the receiving country). The system accumulates these transactions and translates them into bulk bank transfers from its bank account in the sending country to the bank account of the organization that uses UMVA in the country of destination. While the real transfer may take some time, the money can almost instantly be available at the receiving end, because the receiver is notified that money has been sent to his/her UMVA account, and it can either be withdrawn (e.g. at post offices or cooperating microfinance organizations) or used to make payments to other UMVA account holders. UMVA accounts can not only be created for money, they can also be created for commodities (sacks of cement, fertilizer, coffee, school fees, etc.) allowing to trace the use of money for important categories of expenditures.

    Users of UMVA accounts receive a basic computer training to handle their account – and to use the internet for access to all kind of relevant information as well as for communication with family members abroad. The better the communication and the links maintained, the larger probably the flow of remittances will be.

    Since large groups of recipients and local organizations get connected to the system and open an UMVA account, the system can also be used to make local payments, - reducing the risky use of cash, facilitating the administration of the institutions involved, increasing transparency and cutting down opportunities for corruption. A central role is played by schools, where every student can hold an UMVA account, where financial literacy can be taught, and which also reach out to the parents to involve them in the system.

    Download the full report :

     

    MECSEF COOPERATIVE a New International Bank for Senegalese migrants,

    MECSEF (Mutuelle d'Épargne et de Crédit des Sénégalais en France) and AUXFIN today signed a contract to install the UMVA and AUX-EL platform. Members of MECSEF in France can use UMVA Client system for remittances at low cost, while continuing to benefit from savings products MECSEF. The goal is to connect France members with those of Senegal via internet, which will reduce the cost of remittances and increase value to members and promoting MECSEF members in their goal of bring economic wealth in Senegal.

    The UMVA system is specially designed for small banks and has provided functions for migrants. 

     For detail information Download pdf: UKDownload pdf  FRDownload pdf

      

    INAFI International Implements a User-Owned, Low Cost Remittance Service

    International Network of Alternative Financial Institutions (INAFI International) is delighted to announce that it secured funding from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) under its Financing Facility for Remittances to start with the implementation of a User-Owned, Low Cost Remittance Service. This service will

    • Provide an alternative to the current cash-to-cash dominated remittance services;
    • Increase financial literacy among remittance senders and recipients; and
    • Link remittances to microfinance services allowing access to bank accounts, savings, credit services and innovative remittance-based products and services.Initially, under the scope of the grant agreement signed between INAFI and IFAD, the service will target the important Spain-Senegal corridor and it will therefore be implemented at two INAFI member Micro Finance Institutions in Senegal (FDEA and U-IMCEC).Once the expected results are achieved, the service could easily be rolled out to other countries.

    INAFI believes that low-cost transfer of remittances is a necessary tool to bring financial services closer to poor people and expects that this innovative new service will serve as a platform to promote local, social and economic development.

    To implement the User-Owned, Low Cost Remittance Service, INAFI signed a partnership agreement with the Barcelona-based Federation of Associations of Senegalese Migrants (CASC) and AUXFIN.CASC is an organization established to promote cooperation and interrelation between the Senegalese community and the Spanish and Senegalese public administrations. AUXFIN will provide the UMVA system, a platform and software developed for small banks, with special functions for migrants and their needs for remittances services. Mr. Marco van Andel, an expert in micro-finance, remittances and financial development was recruited as the project manager of this project. He will be a key collaborator between the three partners and will manage the project on behalf of INAFI.

    Soukeyna Ndiaye Ba (Executive Director of INAFI): “INAFI is convinced that remittances sent by migrants have a great development potential and therefore remittances is a key theme in our strategic development plan. New initiatives to leverage remittances for development by linking microfinance and remittances are now being initiated by our network in several countries around the world. We are delighted by the support of IFAD to this specific initiative for which our expectations are very high.“

    Amadou Bocar Sam (President of CASC): “The idea of a user-owned, low-cost remittance service has been on top of our agenda for several years and after so much hard work the moment has now come to start implementing the idea. We are convinced that we have the right partners to turn this idea into an innovative reality.”

    Cornelis Heesbeen (CEO of AUXFIN):“We are excited to provide our tested UMVA tools and expertise to this ground-breaking initiative. It is a great opportunity for us to start working with INAFI and 2 of its member MFI’s, thus expanding further the scope of our growing activities. New in this project is the Migrant Development Fund; the results of this project will have a large impact for migrants over the world.”