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Centre for Inclusive Banking in Africa

Where do we come from:              

The Centre was established in April 2004 as the Centre for Microfinance in the Graduate School of Management, Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences at the University of Pretoria.  This was part of an international programme, implemented by the Microfinance Management Institute, funded by CGAP and OSI that culminated in the establishment of similar centres in India, the Philippines and in Costa Rica.  The University of Pretoria's Centre works with all of these, and also with a range of institutions in Africa, ranging from governments and policy institutions, industry bodies and financial institutions.  Over this period the Centre was established as a prominent player contributing to the mitagation of the access to finance challenge.  It was also clear that as the Centre's work unfolded the reach was far wider than conventional microfinance.

What do we offer:

The Centre fulfils three core functions:

Education – developing and presenting courses ranging from microfinance to inclusive banking at formal and non-formal levels, including an MBA Microfinance Elective offered through GIBS, Masters level courses in development and rural finance (at the University of Pretoria and elsewhere), a Certificate in Individual Microenterprise Lending and our flagship certificate course, a Certificate Programme in Microfinance Management.

Research – undertaking research studies in different areas and on diverse aspects of inclusive banking to the poor on a continent-wide collaborative basis.  Here the focus is on financial inclusion; on member based financial services; rural and agricultural finance; legislation and regulation and also SMME finance.  Our research work focuses on topics that will benefit the whole sector and region, rather than studies that will only favour single organisations.

Dissemination of information – including research results in the form of conferences, workshops and publications.  A prime example is the highly successful African Microfinance Conference series that takes place every two years in a different country in Africa.

Who supports us:

The centre is partially self-financed and also is privileged to have a range of formal and informal supporters.  Our current supporters include Absa Bank, the BankSeta, FinMark Trust and past supporters include the Microfinance Management Institute (CGAP and OSI), Microfinance South Africa and the Ford Foundation.

For further information on any aspect of the Centre:

Tel:   +27 12 420 3344; Fax: +27 12 420 2106
E-mail: or