Christy Stickney, CFI Fellow and independent consultant, highlights the characteristics of owners of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) whose businesses have overcome significant hurdles and grown from their micro size.
Christy has utilized qualitative research to identify and analyze clients of MFIs whose borrowing had increased significantly over time from the portfolios of three leading microfinance institutions in Latin America – MiBanco (Peru), Banco Solidario (Ecuador), and Banco ADOPEM (the Dominican Republic). As part of the research, Christy conducted 55 in-depth client interviews and consulted with institution staff. She identifies and describes in detail a select group of “growth entrepreneurs” (GEs) who operate higher growth businesses, have overcome significant growth hurdles, and express a clear vision for future business growth. Christy argues that this category of emerging SMEs holds great potential for future growth and job creation.
Christy also provides recommendations for financial institutions (including microfinance institutions [MFIs]), fintechs, governments, and other financial ecosystem actors to support growth and greater financial inclusion for emerging SMEs and growth entrepreneurs.