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Ventures Magic Bus The Road to Financial Literacy in Rural India


By Bruce MacDonald Route 4, ‘Pune Highway’, Maharashtra State, India: The signs for Pune start appearing miles before the city outskirts—an endless parade of towering, glossy billboards promising luxe apartment life in this boomtown of New India. “One Home, Numerous Wishes!” “Make Life an Occasion.” “Experience the Delightful Living!” And my favorite, the simple and definitive, “This. Is. It.” Our destination is far more modest—and much further still. Accion’s Usha Gopinath and Sachin Hirani, photographer John Rae and I are headed four more hours southeast beyond Pune, to Satara, and then two more beyond that, to Mhaswad. To Old India—or at least to rural India, where the imprint of modernity

FALL 2012

remains decidedly more faint.

Spotlight on Our Supporters 4

I’m here to see Accion’s progress in client education. In 2007, Usha joined

Voices from the Field 5

Accion to examine the feasibility of migrating ‘Dialogue on Business’, our

In the Streets and Markets 6

successful business-skills training program, to India. With more than 700,000 Latin American entrepreneurs trained since 1999 and the program licensed to 51 Latino NGOs, universities, banks and city governments, ‘Dialogue’ was

I Couldn’t Afford a CEO, So I Raised My Own 8

clearly in demand. But how would it work in a country of 28 states and no

Thanks to Our Supporters 9

fewer than 22 official languages? What would constitute success?

MicroMarket 12

Continued on page 2

Magic Bus

bus fills rapidly, a score of eager entrepreneurs jostling for

Continued from page 1

seats at its built-in desks. And so it goes once every week

A day later we stand on a flat, dusty plain, half an hour

hours in spirited interaction with teacher and classmates.

outside Mhaswad. Stunted, thorny trees shimmer in the heat. A line of ragged blue hills guards the horizon. Modest single-room houses of stone and clay, adobe-like, dot the landscape: the subcontinent’s version of the American Southwest. “Indian country,” quips John. In the middle of the plain, incongruously, sits a bus. Not just any bus, but the Mann Deshi Foundation Microfinance Bus. It’s the brainchild of Ms. Chetna Sinha, founder of Mann Deshi Mahila Bank, a regulated cooperative bank run by and for women and, today, with 140,000 clients, the largest microfinance institution in Maharashtra. Impressed with Accion’s client-training work in southern India with the Muthoot Pappachan Group, Mann Deshi selected Accion for a pilot to see whether financial education and business-skills training could actually work in such a rural setting. A grant from HSBC pays for the bus itself; Accion’s role is to establish the program and train the trainers, with a goal of 1,000 clients trained in basic financial and business skills within the year. Usha tells me they’re at 600 and counting.

for ten weeks, as female students of all ages spend three

Today’s lesson is ‘Cash Management’—and for me, another quick tutorial in development practicalities. Where are the chalkboards and the pads and pens, I wonder quietly, as the facilitator demonstrates concepts of income and expense by moving red and green plastic balls between Tupperware containers. “These women are innumerate,” Usha whispers. “This method ensures they understand it easily.”

This is what we do—these pilots, these trials and experiments in inclusion. The application of determination and philanthropy to modest and noble ideas, out here on the edge. Sadly, I’m a week too late to witness the evocativelynamed ‘Self-Management’ class, where women are taught to begin thinking of themselves not just as mothers, not just as housewives, but as entrepreneurs, with creativity and value to add outside the home. But what I do see is

At first the bus looks forgotten, but it turns out we’ve

just as compelling: a dozen giggling schoolgirls, neat as

timed our arrival perfectly. Within minutes, village

naval officers in their blue and white uniforms, waiting

women in yellow and blue and purple saris, bright as

eagerly in the 90-degree heat for the start of the bus’s

birthday presents, materialize through the haze. The

weekly class in computer literacy. They gather as early as one o’clock; class starts at four.


Thank You for Your Feedback and Support In the last issue of Ventures, we included a survey to find out what readers thought about our newsletter. We would like to thank everyone who submitted answers and take this opportunity to address some concerns. While the feedback was mostly positive, some readers said that they’d want to see their donated dollars go directly to programs that help our clients, rather than to publish materials such as Ventures. We strive to be as transparent as possible and to keep our supporters closely informed about our work. While the majority of our public communication is done by email, we produce Ventures twice yearly to satisfy readers who prefer print and to reach those who don’t use computers or other electronic devices to get their information. (The survey revealed a significant number of respondents who prefer printed news.) Two days from now we’ll be what feels like worlds away, in the tropics of Trivandrum, on India’s southern tip—a place where palm trees wave in humid winds and working elephants stroll the streets. Trivandrum and the states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka mark the real measure of Accion’s progress with ‘Dialogue’ in India. Partnering with the Muthoot group to build their Sthreejyoti—“Women’s Empowerment”—program, Usha has helped launch more than a dozen training modules here, from SelfManagement to Sales Strategies, in five regional languages. She has helped direct the training of more than 25,000 women in basic business skills, with a target of 100,000 by 2014. Most recently, with the assis-

Wanting to put more resources in the hands of people who need it most is a desire we share with our readers. And your financial support is crucial for us to execute our mission. Your charitable gifts provide us with the funds we need to work in some of the neediest and most challenging environments around the globe. For all that you do, we thank you, and we ask you to continue to be a part of our journey. Please continue to give us your feedback by going to our website (, calling us at (617) 625-7080 or emailing To learn more about our global impact, visit

tance of Citi Foundation and Friends of Women’s World Banking, she has expanded ‘Dialogue’ to the state of Gujarat. But that’s a whole other story. Right now, it’s all about the bus. This is what we do—these pilots, these trials and experiments in inclusion. The application of determination and philanthropy to modest and noble ideas, out here on the edge. This is what I came 7,500 miles to see. And this, I am reminded once again, is why I work here. For more information on Accion’s client education programs, especially Dialogue on Business, visit

13.2 MI LLI ON

People served in the last ten years with 55.7 million microloans, totaling $46 billion lent


MI LL IO N Active borrowers in 2011, impacting the lives of 25.5 million family members and employees


Spotlight on Our Supporters In Honor of Terry Canavan

Dan Martin, who co-chaired Accion’s board with Terry

It is with sadness that we inform you that Terry Canavan,

I most envied Terry for was his judgment. He was just

an Accion emeritus board member and longtime champion

so sound when it came to sizing up a situation or person.

of Accion and microfinance, passed away this past March

And if he disagreed with you, he’d pause and fix his gaze

at the age of 78.

on you and say ‘d’you really think so?’ And, after thinking

Terry was a board director from 1983 through 1999, serving as co-chairman for ten of those years. He was named an emeritus board member after leaving his

and was his close friend, remembers him with these words: “Terry had a rare gift of foresight—he could predict outcomes better than anyone. . . . One of the other things

it over, you’d usually realize he was right. I had enormous respect for him as a person, and it was impossible not to enjoy spending time with him.”

active post, and he remained supportive of our work

John Scott, a longtime friend of Terry’s in Venezuela and

throughout the remainder of his life. He and his wife

in the U.S. and a fellow Accion board member, said, “I

Mary led one of our first delegations to Latin America,

remember joining the Accion board because I knew Terry

and he was instrumental in recruiting board directors

wouldn’t be wasting his time on something not really

for our lending programs in the United States.

worthwhile, and I have never regretted a minute, as I

Following his graduation from Williams College in 1955,

know he didn’t either.”

Terry committed to Chemical Bank training and then

Bill Burrus served as Executive Director under Terry

enlisted in the United States Air Force. After serving as

for ten years. He remembers how much he appreciated

a fighter pilot for four years, Terry returned to Chemical

working with Terry: “I loved his sense of humor, his

Bank until he retired as executive vice president in 1994.

straightforward approach to life. . . . I knew that I could

Deeply dedicated to Latin America, Terry opened the

always go to him with any situation or challenge and

bank’s office in Caracas, Venezuela, in 1964; directed the

he would know what to do. He was a real leader and a

office in Mexico City from 1969 to 1970; and ran Chemical

true friend.”

Bank’s finance company in Spain from 1971 to 1972. He returned to Caracas in 1973 to manage a large part of the bank’s Latin America business. Terry later came back to the United States and ran the bank’s business in emerging markets.

Terry will be greatly missed by all of us at Accion. He made an indelible mark on our organization and helped to shape the microfinance industry; in doing so, he touched the lives of millions of hardworking people worldwide. A special thanks to those who shared memories of Terry with us and who made contributions in his honor to help continue the good work of Accion around the world. Please join us in sending heartfelt condolences to Terry’s wife Mary and his children, Christopher, Michael and Patricia.


Voices from the Field easier, the demand is already in place. In addition, the increased regulation of the microfinance industry in India that followed the Andhra Pradesh crisis has driven Swadhaar to continuously look for ways to increase the efficiency of its operations. Swaadhar is launching its pilot this fall in partnership with India’s telecommunications giant Airtel. Swaadhar clients will be able to use Airtel’s current mobile wallet technology platform to make their monthly loan payments. Here is how it works: Clients will be able to go to any Airtel merchant carrier—as you might go to a grocery store to make a wire transfer —and deposit funds into their mobile phone accounts, a process commonly referred to as ‘topping-up.’ Then, when it’s time to pay bills, they can simply send a text message to Swadhaar and the funds for their loan payments will be deducted from their accounts. “It’s all about usership,” Urmee says with regard to how we’ll know if the pilot is successful. Just because the clients have access to a mobile phone doesn’t necessarily

The Future of Financial Inclusion Is Your Mobile Phone

mean that they’ll want to use it to make payments.

It’s no secret to industry insiders that the development

so that our clients trust and value the new service,”

and use of ‘mobile money’—the term broadly used to

Urmee continues.

describe the ever-growing variety of financial services that can be transacted using a mobile phone—is at a tipping point in the microfinance industry.

The service needs to be easy to understand and easy to use—which isn’t necessarily the case when there are many languages in use, such as English, Hindi and a mix of other regional languages. “That is why it is so important that we get the system right now, in the pilot phase,

If it does work, however, the benefits are numerous. Clients will have access to a new method of safeguarding savings through their mobile wallet accounts. Swadhaar

And our partner, Swadhaar FinServe in Mumbai, India, is

will benefit, too, by reducing payment collection time and

no different. This summer, we spoke with Urmee Mehta,

allowing loan officers to focus instead on reaching new

General Manager of Products and Strategy at Swadhaar,

clients for loans. Additionally, Swadhaar will be able to

about their plans to collect loan payments through their

have up-to-the-minute account information about their

clients’ mobile phones.

clients’ timeliness of payments.

Mobile money is at a tipping point in the microfinance industry. Swadhaar serves as an ideal backdrop for a project of this kind. With a large pool of urban clients who already possess mobile phones and could likely benefit from

Swadhaar FinServe Pvt. Ltd is a partner of Accion. Their focus on individual clients in the urban slums of Mumbai was unheard of when Accion entered the Indian microfinance industry in 2005. For more information about how mobile payments work, check out the Accion Ambassadors blog—http://accionambassadors.—where Accion Ambassador Abhishank Jajur details the opportunities and challenges of mobile payments in Zambia.

a service that would make the loan payment process


In the Streets and Markets United States Accion Texas Inc., a member of the Accion U.S. Network, has expanded its lending and business support operation beyond Texas and Louisiana. It now includes the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee. The growth was spurred by a partnership with Southeast Missouri State University, the Delta Regional Authority, the U.S. Small Business Administration and others to support entrepreneurship and economic development in the economically distressed Mississippi River Delta region, where access to capital is a critical need. For more information, visit




This summer, Accion completed an investment totaling US$1.9 million in CrediConfia, a microfinance institution (MFI) providing financial services to microentrepreneurs and low-income households in rural and semi-urban areas in east-central Mexico. The investment provides Accion with a 9 percent stake in CrediConfia, a board seat and the opportunity to engage in a three-year service contract providing governance, management and technical support to the MFI. A key element of that support will include deployment of Accion’s credit technology to expand and improve the scope of CrediConfia’s products, improve loan quality and profitability and, in turn, help position CrediConfia as a leading provider of microfinance products and services in Mexico. CrediConfia’s goal is to serve the economically active poor in Mexico’s informal economy by offering microloans to help expand their businesses and improve their living standards. Currently, CrediConfia serves 21,500 clients through a network of 25 branches covering the states of Mexico, Puebla, Hidalgo and Michoacan.

This past July, Accion proudly launched Avanza, a new service to manage microfinance portfolios on behalf of banks and microfinance institutions, with the goal of decreasing operating costs and increasing loan disbursement speed and, through better risk analysis, improving client protection. It can typically take up to three to five days for loan disbursement in Latin America, but Avanza aims to reduce processing time to as little as just eight hours, helping to get clients the services they need sooner. Avanza makes use of innovative credit scoring methods and field technology to manage microfinance risk and make lending more efficient. It is being piloted with Finamérica, Accion’s partner MFI in Colombia, in the high-density municipality of Suba, in northern Bogota.

India, Chile

Worldwide In recent years, the microfinance industry has made significant strides in advancing responsible practices that protect and appropriately serve clients. However, more work remains. This is why, this past September, microfinance leaders unveiled the “Global Appeal for Responsible Microfinance,” a landmark document urging all microfinance stakeholders to take concerted action to ensure a strong and principled microfinance industry. The Global Appeal calls for a more united, deliberate effort by stakeholders at all levels, including microfinance professionals, investors and policy makers, to ensure the continued success of the industry. The Global Appeal asks signatories to outline their plans for improving their own practices, making measurable, time-bound commitments on how they will contribute to a responsible sector. Signatories are called to announce their plans by the end of December 2013. For more information, visit

In 2008, Accion’s Frontier Investments Group was launched to address the bottlenecks to financial inclusion by making early-stage investments in disruptive business models and technologies to increase the efficiency, reach and scope of financial services to the underserved. To date, Frontier has invested in eight groundbreaking enterprises in areas that include microinsurance, branchless banking and business process outsourcing. Most recently, Frontier invested in Shubham Housing Development Finance Company, an affordable housing lender in India targeting low-income, self-employed families in urban and semi-urban areas. Frontier has also invested in Tiaxa, a technology service provider based in Chile that has developed a credit-scoring platform providing prepaid phone users instantaneous access to ‘nanoloans’ that are recovered at the next top-up. For more information, visit

Worldwide The Accion Venture Lab launched officially in April 2012 and has gotten off to a fast start, having made two investments so far. Venture Lab is a global impact investment initiative, sponsored by Accion, which provides seed-stage capital and management support to jumpstart innovative startups that can help people living in poverty access financial services. Venture Lab’s first investment is Coda Payments, a company that makes it possible for customers in Southeast Asia to make purchases of “virtual goods” using mobile phone airtime. Venture Lab’s second investment is Demyst.Data, a company that helps financial institutions access and analyze new data sources (such as online and social media) as a way to responsibly lend to those customers who would lack traditional access to credit and other financial services. For more information, visit


Chris has indeed brought incredible changes to the oncetiny bakery. After studying computer science in college and working in the tech industry, Chris joined his father at the bakery with a vision to put La Panaderia on the map. “I knew my dad had amazing products,” Chris says. “He had baked bread sculptures in the shape of a turkey for Thanksgiving and even made a Chinese dragon for a wedding, all one piece of bread.”

“When Accion came into the picture it was a huge relief.” Determined to shine the spotlight on his father’s unique art, Chris contacted major media outlets. In 2003, the Golden Crown was featured on the Food Network’s Food Finds, and national media attention followed. Once the word got out, the Moraleses were blown away by the volume of customers flocking to their bakery. It was clear that it was time to expand, but in looking to

I Couldn’t Afford a CEO, So I Raised my Own A Father-Son Business Grows to Receive National Acclaim It’s hard not to feel energized the minute you walk through the door of the Golden Crown Panaderia in Albuquerque. Perhaps it’s the hearty smell of their famous green chili bread or the smiles on the faces of Pratt and Chris Morales, father-and-son co-owners.

finance the move Pratt found his lack of credit history made working with banks impossible. Then, in 2004, one banker mentioned Accion. “When Accion came into the picture it was a huge relief,” explains Pratt. “We thought, ‘Now we have something to work with.’ We would still be where we were ten years ago if it weren’t for Accion.” “How many banks will come sit down with you over a cup of coffee and help you with your business?” asks Chris. “The bigger banks have no way to give the support or the education—that’s why Accion is so important.”

Or, possibly, it’s the free biscochitos.

Since the first loan in 2004, the business has grown

Pratt Morales has been in the business of baking since

to include pizzas and sandwiches. Recently, La Panaderia

1974. His story is about love—a love for baking and a choice he made to pursue that love over 35 years ago. Formally trained as an accountant, the former auditorgeneral for the Air Force decided that when it came to his career, he’d rather be working with a different kind of dough. So when he left the Air Force, Pratt chose to invest his life savings into starting a small, local bakery. “And as it turned out,” Pratt says, “a bakery was an

tremendously. In 2005, the bakery expanded its offerings has added a coffee and tea bar with a one-of-a-kind cold brew system. The next step? Chris says an indoor aquaponic garden, which will allow them to sustainably grow some of the ingredients they use in the kitchen. “It’s a world of our own here,” says Pratt. “And it all revolves around love and respect between two human beings. I couldn’t afford a CEO, so I raised my own.”

excellent place to raise a son.”

“If I had one wish, it would be that Accion gets all the

After a divorce left Pratt a single dad while Chris was

it. They know how to communicate on our level. That’s

still young, Pratt had no choice but to bring his son to work. Over time, Pratt taught Chris everything he knew. “He started baking and being a great contributor to the business. It taught him self-confidence. Now look at him—he’s incredible.” 8 VENTURES | FALL 2012

money in the world, because they know what to do with what will turn this country around—it’s about support.” To learn more about Accion in New Mexico, visit

Thanks to Our Supporters The following individuals provided generous support between January 1, 2012 and June 30, 2012. We value and appreciate contributions throughout the year. Accioinistas (US$10,000–US$99,999) Susan and Eric Boyd Titus and Wendy Brenninkmeijer Colleen Foster and Christopher Canavan Robert Friede Scott and Laura Malkin Katherine C. Moore Elizabeth Philipp and David Pettker Sophie Stenbeck

Partners (US$5,000–US$9,999) Lynda Boone Fetter Solana Cozzo Keith and Adine Kretschmer Richard and Linda Miller The Estate of Grant Mortenson Paul Rogers and Rosa Lasaosa Gabriel and Janet Rozman Lucy and Daniel Stroock

Challengers (US$1,000–US$4,999) Anonymous (1) Olivia Aldridge John and Linda Benner Clinton Caywood Jeffrey and Elena Clark Alan Cody Eleanor Crook Barbara Friedberg Roberta Eisman Goldstein Patsy M. Graham Charles and Jill Gross Joe and Luisa Hamilton John and Julie Howie Mary and George Johnston Judy Judd Frank H. Kane Morton and Merle Kane Arif and Deborah Kureshy David L. Leppik Nagina Malguria Peter and Isabel Malkin Sarah McCabe and Russell Quong John Osborn Sarah Pacheco Najarian and Mark Najarian Perry and Virginia Peine Daniel Pierce Robert and Sally Quinn

David A. Smith James Sommerville George Soros Frances W. Stevenson J. Arnold and Maxine Teasdale Kelley Torrey Rebekah Vickrey

Advocates (US$500–US$999) Anonymous (1) John and Sharon Amdall Leif and Susan Ancker Ron and Maria Anderson Sharon Bower Hugh Brady Joy and Steven Bunson Catherine Bye Lorene W. Chang David and Deborah Dressler Gary R. Fender C. Peter Giuliano Elizabeth and James Glenn Arlene M. Goodes Edward J. Gracely Gail Greenwald Mark and Sharon Gudesblatt Clifford and Doris Gurney James C. Hand John Hirschi David O. Jackson Monwhea Jeng Curt and Betty Jones Granvilette W. Kestenbaum Eric Korsh Daniel J. Lew Peter and Ann Martin Paul McCarthy and Orla O’Callaghan John McIntire Sarah Morisot Ruth I. Morton Michael Mulholland Thomas H. O’Connor, Jr. Gail B. Odgers Robert and Joan Pienkowski Jacqueline and Jean Paul Plumez Alexander Robarts and Miran Yoon-Robarts Patricia G. Robinson C. Randolph Ross James and Marjory Russell Scott Santin

John H. Schatteles Katharine J. Schrader RJ Serra Douglas J. Simmons Arthur Sklaroff and Clare Chang-Sklaroff Michael Stanley Hope B. Stevens Mark and Judith Strickland Robert and Bonnie Temple Valerie Thomas Hamilton David J. Tilles Lee Van Divort Tina Vandersteel and Matthew Cressotti Daniel and Pamela Volkmann Frances A. Walker Thomas J. Wersto Nathan Williams Katarzyna Witkowski Joanne C. Zema

Friends (US$250–US$499) Anonymous (4) Bruce and Susan Ackerman Janet Alsever Katherine and D. Stan Barnhill Mary Jane Barth Frank D. Bean John N. Bennett Peter and Susan Betzer Jerry and Helga Bilik Jean F. Bonini Douglas and Mary Bower Jeffrey W. Bracken William Braden, III Eregina Bradford Michael Briselli and Jeannee Sacken Walter B. Brissenden Damian G. Bulfin C. S. Burgess, Jr. John Carpenter John and Nancy Citti Christine Cottrell Jemma T. Crae Rosemary Cuccaro Patrick Curley Mary A. Dahlgren Walter and Edith Davie Carl and Constance Dellmuth Frank DiGiacomo Robert and Paula Easton

Ronald J. Edwards Donald and Mary Lou Eitzman Betty Ellerin Charles and Betty Feltus Stanley and Gwen Fischer Sally and John Fish Brenda Formes Elizabeth Gagne Jeanne Gerson Kurt R.A. Giambastiani Helen W. Gjessing William and Marjorie Glover Irene E. Goodale Connie and Kenneth Graham Jonathan Green Margaret D. Griffel Joseph Hedal and Jane Wojick Pamela Markham Heller Konstanze L. Hickey Joyce Hirman Elizabeth B. Hirsch Patricia M. Hoeft Linda S. Hoover Glenn R. Hubbard Annie M. Isreal Carol and Kenneth Jackman Dilmus and Jeanette James John and Frances Kane Robert A. Kelly Joseph Kenderdine Peter Kenny Kevin and Kathryn Kerns Christopher and Elizabeth Keys Shakti Khalsa Patrick Kleaver Dave and Jan Kolstad Russell and Janice Kramer Amar and Rachel Kuchinad Robert Kuehnle Robert Lanni Christian R. Lehew William C. Leininger Gertrude and Jeannette Lepine Robert Liebowitz Robert Loftfield Stewart Macaulay William and Joanne Mahoney Gerald and Madeline Malovany Charles T. Martin, Jr. Katie Matthew William V. McElwain Patrick E. Meyers Mary Michael Sue Miller

Mark A. Moran Eduard E. Morf Peter A. Morgan John Wilson and Linda Morris John T. Neises William K. Nisbet James W. Novosel Patrick and Ellen O’Donnell Mairin O’Mahony Robert F. Paashaus Jane R. Pak Livingston and Joanna Parsons Andrea Paulson Lyle and Myrna Peacock Joe Persinger Henry Posner, III Philip E. Potter Joyce Mitchell Price Nan Ransohoff Mark Richman Sharon Rives and Paul Kendall Samuel and Eleanor Robfogel Barbara Robinson John B. Robinson, Jr. Julie R. Roden Coen Rood William Ruffer, Jr. Richard W. Sankey John and Martha Shaw Milton and Elizabeth Small Henry and Valerie Smeltzer Roberta Spitzberg Paul Stengel Katherine and Hugh Stierhoff James W. Stricker Razvan Surdulescu Toshi T. Suzuki Jacueline Swat Robert L. Tong Wendy C. Tucker Gary and Darcia Tudor Robert and Marjorie Van Handel Kathryn Van Stone and Robert Smith Ellen Walton John and Susan Wierdsma Linda Wieser and Jim Rosbe Michael O. Willson Janet F. Winslow Houston Wong John and Barbara Woods Jean Zamboni Judy and John Zauha Abbas Zuaiter


Thanks to Our Supporters Sustainer’s Society The Sustainer’s Society honors and recognizes a special group of loyal supporters who demonstrate their commitment to bringing financial empowerment to millions of people by making monthly gifts to Accion. Anonymous (33) Miriam Adlum Robert R. Ammerman Marguerite P. Anderson Jordan J. Arbit Bruce W. Ashford Chris Bache Mikal Baker Linda A. Ballas Maria A. Barbieri Darrell and Laurel Batson Peter and Mayumi Baum Maureen Bennett Howard and Deborah Bernstein Vincent J. Bertino Peter Bevan Norma Boecker Daniel F. Bostwick Dawn S. Bowen Douglas and Mary Bower Jerry Brady and Rickie Orchin Brady John C. Brandt Lisa Brenskelle Molly Brewton Robert M. Brown Anthony and Margaret Browne Ann Brunswick Deborah D. Buffton Patty A. Cabot Brandi Carberry Vitier Betsy and Steven Card Gerda L. Carmichael Maria Caruso Vincent Casalaina Daniel Casar Arturo Castillo David Chamberlain William M. Cloherty Edward H. Coburn Peter D. Cook Clelia Corona Norman Cravens Richard S. Crowell Katharine K. Dannenberg Brian Daschbach Elvin De La Cruz Hedwig Dekker


Hanns J. Derke Leah and Kenneth Dick Eileen Dicks Mary Doerr Jeane J. Doncaster Alice Doppler Don and Jan Downing Judy Dubin Mark Ekblad Kate Elsley EPreward, Inc. Vincenza Ercole David Erickson Wes G. Ernsberger Sandra Esner Bob Ewert Harry Fadigan Patrick Falkner Keitha Farney Vivian E. Feagan Mark Fernquest Stephanie and Owen Foizen Darvin Foo Arthur R. Foster John-Paul and Katherine Franklin Lynn A. Franks Dennis and Carol Friedman William Frohn William R. Garner Erik Gehring and Julie Wright Gail P. Gentry Hope Gladney Jessup Mary L. Glatt-Banks Sarah Gold Christine Golliver Glen Grayman Vickie and Gary Greaves William J. Hadden, Jr. Lisa and Richard Hajdukiewicz Barbara Hale-Seubert Charles Hammer Seymour Hanan Ellen Hanley Wendy Harris Steve and Hilary Harston Thomas F. Heck Jonathan Hera Donald L. Herold John D. Hicks Michael High Nancy Houk Sam and Tristan Houston Mary C. Hudgins Charles Hughes Virginia W. Hulbert James E. Hunter Emmette Jacob

William and Patricia Janas Caren Johnson Phillipa Kafka Suzanne A. Kane Jezra Kaye Diana Keegan Rayman Keung Carolyn A. Kidder Jonathan Kimmel Janet and Alvin King Wayne and M. Lynn Kinney Marcella Klein Robert and Jean Kline Robert Koenig George and May Koo Louise Ladd Nina Lesavoy Joan M. Levine James and Elizabeth Licata Eileen D. Logan Joan Lomaki Robert Loucks James E. Lubbock Mary Luby Jane W. Lusk George and Beatrice Luthringer Paul E. Lutton Gabriella Maertens Ernani Magalhaes Henry Mahier Nagina Malguria Vicki Marks Anne A. Marshall Susan V. Martin Vicki Lynne Mattingly Louise McAllister Jean McCown Bonnie B. McKenzie Mary and Willard Mergenthal Jesper J. Michaelsen Steven P. Millard Steven and Rhonda Miller Lisa H. Miller Mary D. Moon Ariel Morgenstern Warren F. Morrow Ellen C. Mudrovich Jeffrey and Trisha Murawski Patricia R. Murphy Lindsay Noll and Luke Leafgren Ellen C. Oppler Elizabeth Osborn and Joseph Griffith Martin Peter Gene and Doris Peters Mary Jo Peters Julie Phillips

Sylvia B. Piven Louise B. Popkin Eva L. Prescott Mary M. Printzenhoff Sai Rao Karla Reed Charlotte Rembolt Chantal Richard Billie Jo Richards Rebecca Ridgeway Eileen Riley Charles Robinson Heather A. Rodin Gerard Rohlf Nancy Rudolph Donald P. Ruehl R. W. Rumsey J. Rusciolelli Terrance W. Ryan Michel Santerre Les Schofield Martha K. Schuh Kathryn and John Schulte Philip Schuyler JoAnn Schwartz Benjamin Seigel Susan Selbin Luke Shafnisky Tom and Sharon Sharratt Vance Shaw Gregory and Josephine Shaya Thomas W. Sheehan Theresa Shelzi Emil Smith Justin E. Sockett John Speer Robert Speier Bruce and Julie Spring Guy Strenck Dorothy Sucato Beverly J. Sutton Borje Svensson Jane Tan and Kenneth Schwartz Betsi J. Taylor Roger and Shirley Thomas Jennifer Tice Ancel C. Tipton, Jr. Nancy T. Trimble Altagracia Trinidad Jennifer M. Tweet Elisa Udaskin Henry F. Valente Mario Valladares Benjamin Viemeister Fredrick Washington Lelon and Jean Weaver Susan Webb Margaret L. Welin Leslie Wilbur

Tonia Willekes Jo Ann Williams Sheila Williams Enery Williamson Virginia Windley Stuart Wolff Helen Zimmerman T. G. Zimmerman

Institutions Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries (BIO) The Brinson Foundation Citi Foundation Credit Suisse First Congragational Church Of Billerica The Ford Foundation Fordham University John and Mary Franklin Foundation, Inc. Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation The Glickenhaus Foundation Grassland Finance Ltd Hardcastle Trading USA Holmdel High School Spanish Honor Society Honeybee Foundation Inter-American Development Bank International Finance Corporation KfW Bankengruppe Kretschmer Private Foundation The LaGarde Charitable Trust The David and Katherine Moore Family Foundation David & Carol Myers Foundation Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO) Nothing Falls Short, LLC Rudy and Alice Ramsey Foundation Robinson Family Trust Sagamore Investment Management SL 2005 Family Trust Social Visionary Foundation The Stone Soup Fund Swiss Capacity Building Facility Trull Foundation UPS Foundation Visa International Weiss Fagen Fund

Donor Advised Funds, Matching Gift Organizations and Workplace Giving Programs America’s Charities American Express Foundation American Tower Corporation AT&T United Way Employee Giving Campaign Ayco Charitable Foundation Bergen County United Way BlackRock Matching Gift Program Boeing Charitable Trust The Boston Foundation, Inc. Calvert Social Investment Foundation Chevron Corporation Chubb Group of Insurance Companies Combined Jewish Philanthropies The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region Community Foundation of Gaston County The Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro Dell Direct Giving Program ExxonMobil Foundation Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund FM Global Foundation of Massachusetts, Inc. The Freddie Mac Foundation GE Foundation Global Impact Goldman Sachs & Co. Google, Inc. Grantham, Mayo, Van Otterloo & Co., LLC The Greater Kansas City Community Foundation Insurance Services Offices, Inc. International Business Machines Jewish Communal Fund The Jewish Community Foundation Los Angeles Kaiser Permanente The Liberty Mutual Foundation The Merck Company Foundation Microsoft Corporation Minneapolis Jewish Federation MissionFish

Morgan Stanley Network For Good Northrop Grumman Employee Charity Organization Orange County Community Foundation The Pfizer Foundation, Inc. The Pittsburgh Foundation Razoo Foundation The Regence Employee Giving Campaign Rochester Area Community Foundation Russell Investments Sabre Holdings SAP Matching Gift Program The Schwab Charitable Fund Siemens USA State Employees’ Community Campaign Tompkins Charitable Gift Fund U.S. Charitable Gift Trust United Way California Capital Region United Way of Rhode Island United Way of Snohomish County Vanguard Charitable Endowment Program Verizon Foundation Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation World Bank Community Connections Fund WPG Solutions, Inc. Xcel Energy YourCause, LLC

In-Kind Donors Kathleen Baum The Boston Beer Company Capital Grille Corporate Traveler Boston Russell and Carol Faucett G2O Spa and Salon Laura Giadorou-Koch David and Catharine Hamilton Margaret and Robert Herrick Dianne and Ron Hoge Ana and Jeffrey Isen New England Development Post 390 Heidi Steiger Tuscana West

Recife Society The Recife Society honors and recognizes those loyal supporters who are helping to ensure the future empowerment of hardworking people worldwide through planned giving. Anonymous (1) Charles A. Abela Andres Acedo del Olmo and Belinda Barrington Ronald and Patricia Anderson Robert and Margarita Bartels James Bellevue and Elena Lipkowski Mark and Margaret Burgessporter Lynn Caporale Carol Cavanaugh Roger and Shirley Conant William R. Dade Ruth O. Frank Emily Garlin Gilbert W. Glass Foster Goodwill and Renee Hummel Bob and Elly Gordman Ruth Hartman and Gary Wolff June E. Heilman Roy Jacobowitz and Roberta Moss Keith and Adine Kretschmer Roger L. Krouse Roni Lebauer and Michelle Ryan Wendy and Stanley Marsh, 3 Richard and Linda Miller Thomas Nagle and Leslie Haller Robert Newman Caroline Ramsay Merriam Mila Reyes-Mesia Abigail Rome Norman C. Rose Robert and Sibylle Scarlett Josie Sentner George and Barbara Lou Smyth Paul Tregidgo and Barbara Belch Nancy Sherwood Truitt David and Laurel Walters Gary A. Winter

Recife Society Your Support Can Make a Lasting Change for Generations to Come Strengthen Accion’s Future through Planned Giving You can leave a legacy of hope and empowerment for millions of people living in poverty. By naming us in your will or trust, you join a special group of friends known as the Recife Society. Named after the city in Brazil where we made the very first microloan in 1973, the Recife Society continues the tradition of helping hardworking people build better lives for themselves and their families. We invite you to learn more about this dedicated group of supporters by calling or emailing us: (617) 625-7080,

“I named Accion in my will because my hope for the future is that people will be able to decide their economic futures for themselves and not have it dictated to them. Microfinance enables that. I want to make sure that the work continues—the work that I have done for economic justice in my lifetime and the work that Accion is doing.” CAROLINE RAMSAY MERRIAM, RECIFE SOCIETY MEMBER










Accion’s History Preserved

Shop to Support Small Businesses This Holiday Season

We’ve partnered with Tufts University to establish an official institutional archive. It will serve as a permanent home to corporate documents, financial and statistical data, strategic plans, publications, photographs, memorabilia, websites and other media that define us as a unique organization and as a pioneer in the evolution of the microfinance industry. The archive will also provide a space—both digital and physical—where past, current and future Accion staff, partners and others can explore and learn from the organization’s long history. For more, visit Tuft’s digital library:

Browse through Accion’s MicroMarket to give meaningful virtual gifts in honor of your loved ones and help support hardworking microentrepreneurs abroad.

Find out how it works at You can also support small businesses throughout the United States by purchasing their products online at

Photo Credits John Rae p. 1, 2, 3, 6 (United States), 7 (Worldwide, India, Chile), 8, 11, 12 (MicroMarket) Accion staff p. 4, 6 (Colombia, Mexico), 12 (History)

Printed on recycled|paper with pulp harvested from well managed forests. Printed with soy inks. 12 VENTURES FALLmade 2012

Stock imagery p. 5, 7 (Worldwide)

Ventures Fall 2012 - Winter 2013  

Accion's biannual newsletter publication.

Ventures Fall 2012 - Winter 2013  

Accion's biannual newsletter publication.