The NMI Technical Assistance Facility recently supported the Kenyan microfinance institution Juhudi Kilimo with a project to integrate more technology in its operations. Specifically, this assistance helped simplify operations, improved client risk analysis, expanded the company’s lending approach and diminished operational costs per client. NMI’s Technical Assistance Facility (funded by Norad, the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation) financed 80% of a deep assessment of Juhudi’s IT challenges and options. Juhudi paid for the remaining 20%.
The work was halfway completed when COVID-19 pandemic erupted. It was decided to continue the assistance from a distance and start at once with one of the main follow-up projects: how to remain in contact with (potential) clients in times of social distancing. The project was developed, approved and set-up within three weeks. The resulting mobile application allowed Juhudi to set-up and manage client groups remotely. At the same time, the new set-up also helped client groups handle their course of affairs without face-to-face meetings. Juhudi could therefore continue to serve its clients despite the pandemic.