Jakarta, Indonesia January 18, 2024: One of Indonesia’s fastest-growing fintech companies, Amartha, has partnered with global nonprofit Accion and Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, the philanthropic arm of Mastercard, to scale up its digital lending for micro-businesses. The partnership will strengthen Amartha’s digital channels, develop new product offerings, and advance its customer scoring platform to reach underserved small businesses, particularly those owned by women.
Indonesia is one of the world’s fastest growing countries with an increasing share of adults with a digital bank account. This growth is powered by rising smartphone penetration and internet usage in the country. However, only 51% of the country’s population of 272 million owned an account at a financial institution in 2021, leaving nearly half of the population unbanked. Of the country’s 64.2 million micro and small enterprises (MSEs), only about 17.5 million are participating in the digital ecosystem. This gap is caused by high transaction costs in an ecosystem that lacks solutions for this segment. There is an urgent need for the nearly 47 million underserved entrepreneurs to grow their businesses with digital tools that prioritize their economic health in a responsible way.
With a focus on building shared economic prosperity for underserved communities throughout Indonesia, Amartha has provided over 15.5 trillion Indonesian rupiahs (USD 1 billion) to over 2 million women micro-entrepreneurs across 72,000 villages since 2010. It aims to extend responsible financial solutions to millions more people over the next three years.
“Amartha, Accion, and the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth have shared objectives — reducing inequality in access to financial services,” says Andi Taufan Garuda Putra, founder and CEO, Amartha. “This collaboration will accelerate digital financial inclusion across the archipelago, leveraging our expertise in building inclusive digital financial infrastructure to reach millions of people. Together, we will use technology to catalyze the grassroots economy in Indonesia and extend the benefits of digital financial services beyond lending, making a big difference at the local level.”
The partnership marks the next step in Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth’s ongoing collaboration with Accion, which has helped 12.8 million people globally, including nearly six million MSEs, benefit from digital financial services between 2019 and 2022. Looking ahead, the two organizations aim to help another five million MSEs, including at least one million women-owned businesses, actively use digital financial services to improve their financial health. Services provided under the partnership are expected to reach a total of 10.5 million people over the next four years.
The multi-year program is part of a global commitment by Mastercard to connect one billion individuals and 50 million small businesses to the digital economy by 2025. In Indonesia, the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth has equipped over one million individuals and small businesses with digital and financial literacy in the past five years.
Subhashini Chandran, Vice President, Social Impact, Asia Pacific, Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth said: “Since its founding in 2014, the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth has been leveraging Mastercard’s competencies to advance equitable and sustainable economic growth and financial inclusion around the world. Mastercard is excited to bring this experience and knowledge – as well as philanthropic capital – to this partnership with Amartha and Accion, and create safe, simple and effective digital financial solutions for small businesses across Indonesia. This collaboration reinforces Mastercard’s commitment to power a digital economy that works for every Indonesian.”
Building on six decades of experience in building inclusive financial solutions for underserved people globally, Accion’s advisory team will bolster Amartha’s delivery model with technical solutions to digitize the last mile delivery of financial services to clients, leveraging Amartha’s network to create new offerings for institutional clients and MSE borrowers.
“Indonesia’s economy is growing rapidly. With that comes the need to responsibly include those who are currently excluded from the financial system,” said Victoria White, Managing Director of Accion Advisory. “Using responsible and secure digital services, micro-entrepreneurs can make informed choices and improve their economic well-being. Amartha, with its peer-to-peer online model, is channeling much-needed access to Indonesia’s micro-entrepreneurs and we are excited to deploy our shared expertise to scale up their digital lending.”
Accion is a global nonprofit on a mission to create a fair and inclusive economy for the nearly two billion people who are failed by the global financial system. We develop and scale responsible digital financial solutions for small business owners, smallholder farmers, and women, so they can make informed decisions and improve their lives. Through targeted investment strategies, advisory, and expert thought leadership, we work with local partners to develop and scale cheaper, more accessible, and customer-friendly financial solutions. Since 1961, Accion has helped build more than 230 financial service providers serving low-income clients in 75 countries, reaching more than 350 million people. More at www.accion.org.
PT Amartha Mikro Fintek (Amartha) is a prosperity platform company on a mission to bring inclusive digital financial services to grassroots communities and the world through technology, inclusivity, and sustainability. Amartha has disbursed the working capital of more than 15.5 trillion Indonesian rupiah (USD 1 billion) to more than 2.1 million women-led MSEs in 72,000 villages in Indonesia.
Amartha brings a new concept of lending and borrowing money. For underserved MSEs in rural areas, Amartha provides access to capital. For lenders, our platform represents MSEs as an alternative investment instrument that is profitable and impactful. For villages, Amartha strengthens the informal economy, reduces income inequality, and alleviates poverty. More at www.amartha.com.
About Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth
The Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth advances equitable and sustainable economic growth and financial inclusion around the world. The center leverages the company’s core assets and competencies, including data insights, expertise and technology, while administering the philanthropic Mastercard Impact Fund, to produce independent research, scale global programs and empower a community of thinkers, leaders and doers on the front lines of inclusive growth. For more information and to receive its latest insights, follow the center on Twitter and LinkedIn and subscribe to its newsletter.
Accion Communications Contact
Gaurisha Malhotra, +91 7292058080
Mastercard Communications Contact
Kenny Winandari, +62 21 5790 0325
Mastercard Consultant Communications Contact
Vinsensius Anantyo, +62 878-8665-5665