Knowledge and financing in good order
In the past, PUM and the Lendahand Foundation already occasionally worked together. In 2017 they made their cooperation more structural by signing a partnership agreement. This combination offers SMEs in emerging economies a combination of knowledge and financing. The Lendahand Foundation is the foundation established by the Dutch crowdfunding website Lendahand. Via this site, private individuals can invest in small and medium-sized enterprises in emerging economies such as the Philippines, Ghana and Cambodia. “When it comes to financing, these companies find themselves in something of a black hole. They are too large for microcredit but too small for the high costs of a bank loan,” explained CEO Peter Heijen.
Thanks to the loans offered to these entrepreneurs via Lendahand, they are able to expand their business and take on more people. In this way, Lendahand makes a structural contribution to reducing poverty. The Dutch investors receive between three and six percent interest per year. Alongside the Foundation, Stichting Lendahand helps the businesses obtain relevant knowledge and skills for improving their business operations. At present, training courses are being offered in the field of business models, financial management and marketing sales.
The agreement with PUM was an obvious step. As Peter explained: “Entrepreneurship and employment are the most powerful weapons to tackle poverty. We help to build a sustainable future by offering financing and organising training. PUM has been supplying knowledge and expertise all around the world, for forty years. The two factors combine perfectly. The Lendahand Foundation is keen to expand into new countries. By joining forces with PUM, we can help achieve that ambition.”
For PUM, the provision of services to the Lendahand Foundation represents an attractive addition to the ingredients that make up a mission or programme. As explained by Pedro Eikelenboom of business development at PUM, ‘Our experts can help entrepreneurs draw up a business plan or for example improve a production line. On the other hand, the same entrepreneurs also need financing to put their new-found knowledge into practice. As such, it is valuable to work alongside the Lendahand Foundation to be able to offer a total package of both knowledge and financing.”