Two South based microfinance companies, ESAF Microfinance and Investments (EMFIL) and Navachetna Microfin Services Ltd, have raised Rs 12 crore and Rs 1.5 crore respectively. 

Kerala based EMFIL has raised the amount by diluting a minority stake to Dia Vikas Capital, which is a 100% subsidiary of global microfinance and enterprise development services provider Opportunity International Australia. This was the company’s first round of fundraising. 

Karnataka based Navachetna Microfin Services Ltd raised Rs 1.5 crore from a group of individual investors and IT professionals in its first round of fundraising

Sloka Capital, an advisory firm focussed on medium and micro enterprises, was the advisor for both the transactions.

EMFIL is based out of Thrissur, Kerala, and offers a host of services like credit, insurance, money transfer and micro-energy loan. 

The company has a borrower base of over 230,000 customers across a network of 90 branches. It has a cumulative disbursement of Rs 401 crore. The company aims to reach 1 million poor households by 2014. In April 2008, the company had transformed into a Reserve Bank of India (RBI) regulated Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC). 

The Haveri based Navachetna Microfin Services currently serves more than 25,000 members. The company mainly provides funds to individuals for starting income generating activities such as animal husbandry, livestock rearing, trading, retailing, agricultural production and transportation.

With the raised funds, the company aims to achieve an outreach of 100,000 members by 2010. Navachetna’s microfinance programme was started in April 2006 and the company achieved a break even in the second year of its operations. Navachetna too recently transformed itself into an NBFC.

Microfinance institutions have been raising funds since the beginning of the year. Last month, SKS Microfinance had raised Rs 75 crore by issuing one year NCD (non convertible debentures) at a coupon rate of 10%. It also listed its NCDs listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). 

Hyderabad-based Share Microfinance Ltd is also raising a $50 million round of equity funding. International Finance Corp (IFC), the private equity arm of the World Bank, is looking to invest in the firm with other investors. 

In February this year, CDC invested $15 million in India Financial Inclusion Fund, which is managed by Caspian Advisors Pvt Ltd. It also invested $15 million in Catalyst Microfinance Investors, which invests in greenfield microfinance institutions in India, Pakistan, Nigeria and Ghana.

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