Friday, May 10th, 2013

Launch of the Arcubus Experience

Arcubus returns to the City with a brand new offer! Would you like to share your skills with micro-entrepreneurs in Africa and see for yourself how microfinance really works? With the Arcubus Experience, you can spend from 5 days to 6 months volunteering in the field with one of Arcubus’ microfinance partners. Click here to find out more about this exciting opportunity.

Saturday, April 13th, 2013

Claire

Claire was a stockbroker in the City and gave up her job to travel by motorbike across Motorbike repairAfrica. Most Loan Officers use motorbikes to travel around the villages visiting clients at their businesses, disbursing loans, collecting repayments and savings, and giving training and mentoring. Claire visited the MicroLoan Foundation’s work in Malawi and volunteered by providing motorbike maintenance support for the loan officers; invaluable when the motorbikes play such a crucial role in delivering financial services to remote areas.

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

Arcubus embarks upon a new strategy

Arcubus has been on a learning curve over the last 18 months or so. We’ve been finding it increasingly difficult to find investors for our social investment bond and have concluded that it is not the right product for the City of London. The returns we offer are too low; it falls squarely between the two stools of Corporate Responsibility and Social Investment; the scale is too small for large companies and the 5-year term too long.

Since we launched, other more ‘sexy’ social investment opportunities have emerged and Arcubus now feels that, whilst we remain strongly supportive of social investment as a concept, it’s not the most fruitful way to raise funds for our partners in Africa. It has however really helped us raise awareness of microfinance and we’re grateful to the many companies who have listened to our pitch. We are also grateful for the pioneering work and patience of Allia, who did much to lay the foundations for the popularity and mainstreaming of social investment today.

We’re not ready to hang up our hats yet though; watch this space for news of our next offer…

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

Update from new Gurue bank branch

This branch, in Mozambique, was built by our partner Opportunity International with the help of a grant from Arcubus: In its first 8 months of operation the new branch has made 275 loans reaching 2,330 clients: 225 individuals; 47 farmer groups; 3 commercial groups. There were queues of 50+ to use the mobile bank: in the very first week of operating, and 2.6m Meticais were deposited (£55,000)