'Availability' was one important constraint that corporates were facing, sovaldi sale as far as rural India was concerned. This prompted them to think about strengthening their distribution channels in rural India and soon players like HUL were found creating unique business associations with successful Microfinance networks in rural India. FMCG / other retail players often vie for market share in a highly competitive environment, recipe where the urban market is almost saturated. When 69% of Indian population dwells in rural India, corporates don't have any other option than strengthening their distribution network through cost effective methods.
These types of associations / innovations comple-ment the MFIs, corporates and the communities at large. At a time when strict regulations tighten the screws on the sector in the form of interest cap, most MFIs are looking for newer avenues to increase their revenues. Moreover, those customers of MFIs can hope for a reduction in interest rates, if the ancillary services prove to be a hit. At the same time, corporates can try novel ways to explore rural markets. For the society, this provides an employment opportunity that gives reasonable returns. Project Sakthi of HUL was a classic example in this regard. E- choupal initiated by ITC was another innovative rural offering, intended to expand the market for rural farmers. Godrej & Boyce, Nokia, Bharti Airtel , ICICI , Coco-Cola, Bajaj Allianz, Housing Development Finance Corporation Limited (HDFC) and D.light were few other corporates that came up with innovative rural marketing initiatives. Banking correspondent is another potential area that MFIs can capitalize on to increase their revenues. Lack of enthusiasm among banks in opening rural branches also helped in popularizing the concept of banking correspondents. With the support of Government machineries, MFIs are also open for educating the rural public on the advantages of direct cash transfer.
Recently, ESAF Microfinance has entered into an association with HUL for promoting 'Pureit' brand of water purifiers, as we always give emphasis on holistic development of the community through healthy living. To facilitate the poor in getting easy access of money from distant places, we have developed associations with corporates like western union, express money and money gram etc. To supply energy efficient solar lights to our members we have established an association with Duron Energy. Yes, ESAF proves that MFIs can strive to increase revenues by not compromising on social commitment. For those value-centric corporates MFIs always provide a meaningful opportunity to set their foot in rural India.