Grameen America distributes $1B in microloans to US women

01 Oct,2018

Grameen America has distributed $1 billion in microloans to more than 1,00,000 low-income women entrepreneurs in 13 cities of United States since its inception 10 years ago.

The organisation now has 20 branches in 13 American cities and plans to open a branch in Houston next month, expand to other cities, and deepen its footprint.

Over the next decade, the organisation aims to touch the lives of 1 million people, create 3,60,000 jobs, and invest $12 billion in women-owned businesses. These results were shared to the board in a board meeting held in the New York city  on September 26 with Muhammad Yunus in the chair, said a release of Yunus Centre.

Muhammad Yunus, the founder of Grameen Bank in Bangladesh, first brought his Nobel Peace Prize-winning model to Jackson Heights, Queens, New York City.

It serves women who are usually not eligible for loans from traditional banks and largely excluded from the mainstream US financial system. Start-up loan is under $2,000.

‘This record $1 billion achievement is proof that the model can scale successfully, and we are excited to see where the next decade takes us,’ said Yunus. ‘Many had doubts whether micro-finance would be effective as a poverty alleviation tool in the United States, but we have clearly proved them wrong.’

Women who have received microloans from Grameen America can better afford their basic needs, have less material hardship, and have developed credit histories. Cumulatively, women small business owners who have received loans from Grameen America have created more than 1,09,000 jobs.

‘By investing $1 billion in the entrepreneurial businesses of low-income women, Grameen America has helped over 106,000 women in the United States break out of the cycle of poverty,’ said Andrea Jung, president and CEO. ‘These small loans enable women to start or grow their own businesses, which boosts local economies and is a significant force in revitalising American communities.’

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