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Samhita microfinance

samhita microfinance



  • Provide loans to women with an income of less than 2 USD a day
See all goals & indicators


The state of Madhya Pradesh is among the poorest and least developed regions of India. The state ranks among the lowest in areas of nutrition, public health and gender issues and 37% of the state's population lives below the poverty line (as compared to a national average of 26%), indicating roughly over 20 million people below the poverty line.

Discriminatory traditions, which are attributed to the caste system, are persistent. Over 20% of the population belongs to a scheduled tribe. Microfinance is a tool that can contribute to improving the economic position of the poor. Our partner Samhita is one of the few MFIs that has been able to establish a successful microfinance program in the remote parts of Madhya Pradesh. To identify clients Samhita has developed an index (Samhita's Poverty Assessment Score (SPAS) mechanism). With this index Samhita can identify clients that earn less than 2 Dollar a day and allow them to enter the project.

Initial situation

We have been working with Samhita since 2008. Samhita fits well in our country strategy. In addition to the connection with the mission, it also reflects our geographical focus. We have a strong preference for investment in northern India, as the microfinance sector in the Northern region of India is the least developed and also contains the poorest states. Samhita is now a microfinance institution (MFI) with more than 45,000 active customers, 11,800 subscribers to a micro pension and 6150 life insurance holders.


Together with our partner Samhita Community Development Services, a Microfinance Institution (MFI) based in the state of Madhya Pradesh in India, we aim to improve the social, environmental and economic conditions of the poor and especially women by increasing their access to adequate financial and support services.

Microfinance serves as an important tool and other financial services are gradually offered such as savings, insurance and pension products. This is a good strategic fit with our own policies.


  • 4500 Female microfinance clients provided with loan
  • 1 MFI(s) with increased loan portfolio

Target group

The target group consists of women below the poverty line. Samhita works in one of the most remote districts in Madhya Pradesh (Rewa). This is a predominantly rural district. In order to be able to operate in a financial sustainable manner, Samhita has started urban microfinance in Bhopal to 'cross-subsidise' the rural operations. Since the average loan of Samhita customers is around INR 6,600 (EUR 100), with a loan of EUR 450,000 at least 4,500 customers can be reached.

Project plan

Together with Samhita, we offer eight types of loans with a duration of 25 or 50 weeks. The loans are mainly used for productive purposes (trading, services, agriculture production and animal husbandry).

Samhita works in Madhya Pradash in 16 districts with 35.000 clients. Samhita works both in rural and urban areas. The urban program is mainly in Bhopal and is profitable though it faces competition of other MFI's. The rural program is less profitable and is cross-subsidised by the urban program. In the rural is not much direct competition because Samhita mainly targets clients below the povertly line, while the other MFIs, in their desire for rapid growth, are strongly focused on clients above the poverty line.


In microfinance we measure sustainability of the institution. and therefore of its activities, by calculation the 'operational self sufficiency'(OSS). If all costs are covered by income, the organisation has an 'OSS' level of 100%. At the moment of approval of the loan to GGEM, its OSS level was above 100%. At the moment of approval of the loan to GGEM, its OSS level was 98 %.

Category: Payday loans

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