FIDECOOP joins Causa Local in spreading access to capital
Causa Local and the Cooperative Development and Investment Fund (FIDECOOP, in Spanish) announced an alliance in which FIDECOOP will recommend and endorse businesses they identify as eligible to apply for micro-loans of up to $15,000 at 0% interest from the kiva.org crowd-lending platform.
FIDECOOP, a financing fund for businesses organized under the cooperative model, joins Causa Local’s Kiva Trustee Program, to offer an additional alternative of access to capital to its clients.
Kiva is a digital platform that offers the opportunity to expand, grow, and develop to entrepreneurs with good character, reputation, and repayment ability. The platform provides financing through philanthropic loans to which both the applicant’s community, as well as the global community of more than 1,000 lenders who believe in the economic development opportunities this resource presents, contribute to, Kiva officials said.
“With this agreement, cooperative entrepreneurship gains an additional source of access to financing,” said FIDECOOP Executive Director José Julián Ramírez-Ruiz.
“We see a valuable ally in Kiva for the cooperatives we provide services to and we are excited to continue to position cooperatives as a real option for entrepreneurial development,” he said.
Causa Local is a nonprofit that groups different non-traditional access to capital alternatives for small and medium businesses in Puerto Rico.
Causa Local has deployed more than $2 million in loans of up to $15,000 at 0% interest, though Kiva in Puerto Rico, whose impact has exceeded $2.5 million. To date, Causa Local has benefitted more than 200 entrepreneurs (40% male and 60% female) in Puerto Rico.
“Causa Local aims to support small- and mid-sized entrepreneurs who have a positive impact on their communities,” said Causa Local Executive Director Ana María Cintrón.
“To do so, the organization focuses on the entrepreneur’s reputation as well as other non-traditional factors. We’re the first rung of the local access to capital ladder. Each entrepreneur that decides to support Kiva enters into a solidary and long term collective relationship with us. That is why we have a 97% repayment rate,” she said.