Kaah International Microfinance Institution [KIMS] is Somalia’s only dedicated privately owned microfinance institution, providing responsible and Shariah compliant financing and micro-savings to Somali micro and small businesses.
As KIMS Microfinance has provided more than $8 million in life-changing financing to over 9,000 Somalis [including refugee returnees, IDPs, and groups at risk of leaving the country] since its launch in 2014, it was nominated to apply for the EFICA award.
After a rigorous multi stage process of evaluation - in which over 50 other candidates from 24 countries competed - KIMS presented themselves successfully to EFICA’s Advisory Board, and then managed to beat the UK-based asset management firm Arabesque and Malaysia’s retirement savings fund the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) in the final at the EFICA gala in Dubai in November 2017, taking home the $100,000 first prize. This award recognises KIMS as the institution which provided the ‘most dynamic actionable solution that advance ethics in the world’s financial services’.
KIMS has officially confirmed it will be using the $100,000 award to provide life changing training and finance to help at least 100 refugee returnees start micro and small business projects.
Justin Sykes, KIMS Board member, states: "I praise the organizers of EFICA in promoting ethics and innovation in financial services. Winning this award reflects the growing recognition of the need for long-term market-based solutions in fragile and conflict affected countries. KIMS’ innovative micro and SME financial solutions have enabled at risk populations to become resourceful economic actors, and they will continue to enhance its capabilities and scale its financial service offerings to empower the Somali people to pursue sustainable sources of income."
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