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WB 1998-01: Case Studies in Microfinance: Philippines - Tulay SA PAG-Unlad, Inc (TSPI)

Tulay Sa Pag-Unlad, Inc (TSPI) is a microfinance NGO experiencing organizational tension between a Christian founding mission to help others; subsequent demands (led by a forceful CEO) to expand that mission and pressures in adapting rapidly to many external models in the interest of catching up with the perceived state of the art in micro-finance. Between 1990 and 1994, as the result of the new executive director's exposure to other NGO-run microfinance programs, the organization became driven, in rapid succession, by the prospects of: * A significant scale of outreach to the "ultra poor"; * Financial sustainability based on application of best practices; * The idea that TSPI had to convert its main operations to a bank and do so with urgency. The paper concludes that there were practical reasons for planning the bank: * The NGO habit in the Philippines of taking savings as "capital build up" was beginning to cross the line into deposit taking, not legal for NGOs. Not only does TSPI want to obey the law, but it also realizes that one of the bridges to volume growth is accessing deposits; * The regulatory, policy and funding environment. However, a confusion of the mission of serving the poor with the ambition to be credible in a newly competitive financial environment seem to have created many contradictions.

World Bank
Authors Keywords
Dichter, Thomas W.; Ledgerwood, J.; microfinance; non-government organizations;
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