Karandaaz Pakistan is a not-for-profit special purpose vehicle set up in August 2014. It is funded by the United Kingdom’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Karandaaz strives to improve financial inclusion in Pakistan through: digital financial inclusion for individuals; and, access to finance for micro, small and medium enterprises. The entity is organized into four verticals: Capital, Digital, Innovation, and Research. A third of Karandaaz’s workforce is female, and half of senior management positions are occupied by women.
About the Program:
One of the programs run by Karandaaz, called Women Ventures, offers growth capital and business development support to women-led enterprises. It is one of the largest private sector gender funds in the country, and aims to demonstrate women entrepreneurs as a credit worthy segment. Karandaaz also holds an annual Financial Inclusion for Women Challenge Round, to support tech platforms and financial institutions working to improve women’s financial inclusion.
Karandaaz partners with a wide range of entities from the public and private sectors. Partners include State Bank of Pakistan, Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan, Central Directorate of National Savings, the national G2P program called Benazir Income Support Program, banks, mobile money operators, EMIs, fintechs, tech platforms and other financial service providers.