Andres is a Guatemalan artisan who carries on his parents' tradition of weaving by hand. He specializes in handwoven cotton scarves and handbags. He plans to purchase more yarn so that he can increase production.
Andres has been selling through NOVICA since 2010. This is his story:
"When I was eight years old my father thought it was time to learn to weave on a floor loom, just like he did. My products are associated with the history of Guatemala; for example, our ancestors used to place the tortillas in a square holder woven by the women on a backstrap loom. Now, that same tortilla holder is used as a placemat or napkin. I have taught the art of weaving to more than 80 people and now I dedicate most of my time to designing new colors with natural dyes, innovating weaving techniques and supervising apprentices."
"I really appreciated your assistance with the first micro-credit, which helped me buy the materials to develop a number of new designs. We were able to pay it off completely and on time. Now, I'm requesting a second loan to buy weaving materials for the handbags we are creating. Thank you very much for your support, as we hope to expand the number of designs we craft for you."
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.