Helping Grow Women-Owned Businesses in Mexico
March 29, 2022
Small businesses serve as the backbones of most economies. But in low-income areas – especially if those areas also are remote – lack of access to credit and other financial services can thwart a small business before it even gets off the ground. In Mexico, only 20 percent of low-income people have access to banking services, and most of that cohort is women. That’s why Compartamos Banco exists: to engage entrepreneurs, mainly women business-owners where they live, with loans and other services relevant to their needs.
Founded in 1990 as part of Gentera, a Mexican financial services group, Compartamos has more than 13,000 employees dedicated to providing financial services to mostly low-income women in nearly 2,200 communities across Mexico. Kyndryl has been the bank’s trusted IT partner in this work since 2012, supporting the systems and technology infrastructure that enable the bank's microcredit platform to function. This has empowered Compartamos Banco to scale its outreach at the national level.
“Our business model is based on inclusion. We serve over 2.5 million clients in Mexico alone and many of these families depend on the timely reimbursement of their credit to keep up their productive activities. Kyndryl’s services have actually helped us ensure that they receive their credits on time.” – Gloria Nieto, Executive Director of Client Experience, Compartamos Banco.
Imagine you’re a baker, an in-home piece worker or a provider of children’s day care. Women have taken the lead in forming these businesses – especially in lower income parts of the world. And while such businesses are not global enterprises, they are critically important to the communities they serve. Compartamos Banco extends credit to help these businesses grow, while Kyndryl helps run its back office with reliable systems that support the processing of thousands of microcredit requests with agility, redundancy and security.
As a result, Compartamos Banco is able to deliver the benefits to the baker who needs a commercial oven to keep pace with her growing business, to the piece worker who needs a larger facility so she can provide jobs to others in her community, and to the growing day care business where women who now work outside of the home can entrust their children.
“Central to Kyndryl’s mission is our commitment to working hand-in-hand with enterprises to build a purpose-driven, people-centric society. Our work with Compartamos Banco exemplifies this focus, and we’re proud to help provide the IT foundation and resiliency they need to make such a difference to entrepreneurs across Mexico. – Julio Heshiki, Managing Director, Kyndryl Mexico.
Access to microfinancing drives female empowerment, promotes gender equity and boosts local economies. Compartamos Banco has been operating in Mexico for more than 31 years and has helped more than 13 million people to gain access to vital financial services. With more than 2.5 million customers throughout Mexico – 89 percent of them women – Compartamos Banco is enabling people to capitalize on their ingenuity and hard work and realize their dreams.