Kiva conducts regular, ongoing monitoring of all Field Partners, but only posts status updates here in response to relevant, major changes at the partner.

Partner Description:

Hope Congo is a microfinance institution located in Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo that began operating in May, 2010. A faith-based organization that provides financial services and training to bolster the physical, moral and spiritual health of poor people in the Republic of the Congo, HOPE Congo is part of HOPE International, an NGO that works in the microfinance sector in 14 countries worldwide.

The mission of HOPE Congo is to invest in the enterprises of poor and underprivileged people to help them live more securely. In so doing, HOPE Congo plans to improve living conditions of the population of the Republic of the Congo, empower its citizens, and bridge the gap between formal and informal financial services.

Through the creation of community banks with a group guarantee, HOPE Congo provides savings, credit, and educational services to its clients. These services will nourish a culture of saving and an independent community of responsible and self-sustaining entrepreneurs.

HOPE Congo is Kiva’s first partner in the Republic of the Congo. Despite being one of the fastest-growing economies in the world due to its oil wealth, Congo-Brazzaville’s GNI per capita was $3280 in 2011 (World Bank Group), and the average life expectancy languishes in the low 50s (UNDP, 2009). With infrastructure and agricultural production yet to recover from the civil war that wracked the country during the late 1990s-early 2000s, an estimated 33% of the Republic of the Congo’s inhabitants are undernourished (World Food Programme, 2009).

With its community-banking methodology, HOPE Congo will not only provide credit services, but encourage the community of entrepreneurs in Brazzaville to come together and support one another. It is through solidarity and the hard work of HOPE Congo’s staff members, that HOPE Congo’s mission: “to improve living conditions of the population of the Republic of the Congo, empower its citizens, and bridge the gap between formal and informal financial services” will be achieved.


Status Update - January 31, 2013

Hope Congo's risk rating has been changed from 1 stars to 2.5 stars, signifying a decrease in risk. This change resulted from a regular re-assessment by Kiva analysts, and is based on operational and financial data collected about this partner, as well as conversations with key members of its staff.

Hope Congo is a young institution that began lending in 2010, and its initial low risk rating can be attributed to its lack of an established track record. Since then, it has built a solid portfolio with low delinquency and adequate internal controls. Kiva is pleased to see this progress and continue to support the institution's growth. 

 
A Note on HOPE Congo’s Portfolio Yield:
 
We care deeply about the cost that Kiva borrowers pay for their loans, which is why fair pricing is a core part of our initial due diligence process for Field Partners. With Kiva's 0% capital, many of our Field Partners are also able to add additional value to their loans by reducing interest rates, offering non-financial services or creating new loan products.
 
For partners with reported portfolio yields or average APRs higher than 50%, Kiva takes steps to check that the high rates are justified by the impact of the loans. Kiva also verifies that the partner is not generating unreasonable profits or paying inflated salaries, and that the partner’s elevated operating costs are justified by its operating environment and/or the design of its loan products.
 
We seek to support loans that don’t impose an unjustifiable cost burden on hardworking borrowers. We nevertheless recognize that in order to reach vulnerable and excluded people with high-impact products and services, some of our partners incur high costs that necessitate charging higher-than-average costs to borrowers in order to allow for sustainability and scale. With this partner, Kiva capital is supporting a loan product that costs less than the partner's typical products.
 
Factors that drive up the costs that this partner organization charges its borrowers include:


     • They provide very small loans. This leads to higher operating costs, since providing each individual loan presents a minimum per-unit cost.
     • They provide more than just cash to many of their borrowers, including costly wraparound services such as healthcare, financial or business training, agricultural extension services, insurance or access to education.
     • They’re a small company or organization that hasn’t yet achieved the scale and efficiency necessary to reach sustainability and reduce pricing, but the impact of their services merits the opportunity to prove their business model.

Repayment Performance on Kiva

    This Field Partner All Kiva Partners
  Start Date On Kiva Jun 2, 2010 Oct 12, 2005
Total Loans $2,036,550 $626,441,200
Amount of raised Inactive loans $0 $441,000
Number of raised Inactive loans 0 374
Amount of Paying Back Loans $249,400 $121,478,150
Number of Paying Back Loans 42 133,549
Amount of Ended Loans $1,787,150 $504,522,050
Number of Ended Loans 871 634,907
Delinquency Rate 0.00% 4.60%
Amount in Arrears $0 $3,613,802
Outstanding Portfolio $145,790 $78,532,024
Number of loanDelinquent 0 17,015
Default Rate 0.00% 1.11%
Amount of Ended Loans Defaulted $0 $5,607,054
Amount of Ended Loans $1,787,150 $504,522,050
Number of Ended Loans Defaulted 0 17,324
Currency Exchange Loss Rate 0.00% 0.11%
Amount of Currency Exchange Loss $2 $679,982
Refund Rate 0.10% 0.73%
Amount of Refunded Loans $1,950 $4,592,300
Number of Refunded Loans 3 5,127

Loan Characteristics On Kiva

    This Field Partner All Kiva Partners
  Loans to Women Borrowers 65.37% 74.18%
Average Loan Size $663 $418
Average Individual Loan Size $669 $654
Average Group Loan Size $4,607 $1,837
Average number of borrowers per group 7 8
Average GDP per capita (PPP) in local country $2,250 $3,409
Average Loan Size / GDP per capita (PPP) 29.47% 12.27%
Average Time to Fund a Loan 3.51 days 5.81 days
Average Dollars Raised Per Day Per Loan $188.80 $72.03
  Average Loan Term 3.91 months 10.52 months

Journaling Performance on Kiva

    This Field Partner All Kiva Partners
  Total Journals 83 313,958
  Journaling Rate 9.42% 42.15%
  Average Number of Comments Per Journal 0.00 0.07
  Average Number of Recommendations Per Journal 0.00 1.76

Borrowing Cost Comparison (based on 2012 data)

    This Field Partner Median for MFI's in Country All Kiva Partners
  Average Cost to Borrower 58% PY 58.00% PY 33.35% PY
  Profitability (return on assets) 0.8% 1.7% -1.49%
  Average Loan Size (% of per capita income) 25.70% 164.00% 38.01%

Country Fast Facts

Field Partner Staff

Micah Crist
Paul Etongo
Nate Hill
Patricia Lembo
Clement Ngoma
Mara Seibert