In 2012, along with Habitat for Humanity International, we launched the MicroBuild Fund. We firmly believe that housing microfinance can empower those living in poverty to provide themselves with adequate shelter. Currently, very few financial service providers offer specialized housing loans, and consequently there is far more demand than supply in the current market. To address this specific need, the MicroBuild Fund was jointly established as a source of long-term social investment capital and technical assistance for financial service providers, to expand their housing microfinance portfolios.
In 2016, the invested fund size grew 20% from USD 42 M to USD 50 m, with a total of 34 financial service providers in 22 countries. Among the 34 FSPs that the MicroBuild Fund invests in, five of these investees are new fund partners. Outreach has expanded to three new countries: Colombia, Kosovo and the Dominican Republic. Each investment was supported with a comprehensive technical assistance package provided by Habitat for Humanity’s Centre for Innovation in Shelter and Finance.
In 2016, MicroBuild Fund joined six other OPIC investees in receiving the 2016 Impact Awards, winning the Access to Finance award. MicroBuild is the first housing- or shelter-related OPIC Impact Award.