Saul is a Mexican artisan who specializes in ceramic sculptures. He would like to buy raw materials such as clay, wire and paint. He has been selling through NOVICA since 2009. This is his story:
"I stepped into the world of ceramic arts when I was 12 years old. Back then, my family's economic situation was difficult, so after school, my brother David and I would learn this craft and get paid a small amount. However, we were immediately taken by the artistry and its techniques. There was a teacher from school who was also going through some financial difficulties, so he set up a little workshop in his house and that extra money helped him put his own children through school. Then I went to Juana Velazquez' workshop and that's when I really began to learn the art of ceramics. I stayed at this workshop for 12 years, but a year before I left this great artisan died of cancer. She was like family to us, and we stood by her husband during this difficult time. I started my own workshop when I was 27 years old, and here is where I practice all I learned, always enjoying the beauty of Mexican ceramic artistry. Thank you for your unconditional support through this microcredit. It allows artisans like me to keep growing."
Novica is an e-commerce website that allows artisans around the world to sell unique, high-quality goods directly to consumers. It also offers small loans to help artisans in the developing world start and grow their businesses. It’s possible to buy goods created by the artisans you help fund on the Novica website.
Repayments on Novica loans are tied to artisan revenue. This means that if an artisan has a good month, they will pay back more -- or less during slower months. To accommodate this, all repayments on this loan are due at the end of the loan term. Any repayments received before this deadline will be considered pre-payments, but will still be distributed to lenders as usual.
Because Novica is not a microfinance institution, Kiva’s risk rating system is not applicable. Kiva has conducted onsite due diligence, and Kiva’s Investment Committee approved the organization as a partner. Novica offers artisans loans at 0% interest.