Empowering Uruguay's Small Store Owners to Grow

Jan 2012
Corner stores in Uruguay¿s suburbs and outlying areas are crucial cornerstones of their neighborhoods, selling everything from tomatoes to toothpaste. But no matter how loyal their customers, small shop owners cannot grow their businesses without access to credit.With support from the Inter-American Development Bank's Opportunities for the Majority Initiative (OMJ), Microfinanzas del Uruguay S.A. offers small entrepreneurs an innovative way to leverage their relationships with distributors so they can obtain the credit they need to expand their inventory and enter the formal banking system without leaving their store.
OMJ is a providing a partial credit guarantee of up to 51.4 million Uruguayan pesos to Microfinanzas S.A. for the Mayorista program that uses shopkeepers' payment records with distributors to offer them a line of credit. OMJ pioneered leveraging distribution platforms to reach the unbanked at the base of the pyramid; Mayorista builds on that success.