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Assisting financial institutions to improve financial access for SMEs.

Given the notable contribution that SMEs (small and medium enterprises) make towards GDP in developing countries, a good understanding of the challenges SMEs face is a key starting point for any government or donor organisation that aims to improve the experiences of SMEs.

Genesis was commissioned by the IFC to undertake several deep-dive studies on MSME finance that were used to inform the IFC’s advisory to its (financial institution) clients to improve financial access for SMEs.

The methodology and approaches used to conduct these studies entail an in-depth understanding of the country contexts and enabling environments within which these SMEs exist.

Primary research is used to better understand the experience of SMEs, their challenges and how financial sector stakeholders can better serve them. This is achieved through extensive desk-based research and consultations with local stakeholders (government, regulators, associations and private sector players).

An analysis of the demand-side dynamics is also done to understand access to finance, constraints to access, use of products, attitudes towards and need for digital financial services and other products and services. Value-chain analysis is then used to map and understand the opportunities presented for financial inclusion through improved product and channel design.

A supply-side analysis is conducted to understand the contributions of banks, fintechs, mobile-money providers, payment providers and other support organisations within the SME environment.

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