> Posted by Connie Gonzalez, Director of the Portal de Microfinanzas, INCAE/CGAP
The Spanish Microfinance Gateway, called Portal de Microfinanzas, is an affiliate language site of the Microfinance Gateway (www.microfinancegateway.org) managed by INCAE Business School in Costa Rica. The Microfinance Gateway is a service provided by CGAP, housed at the World Bank, which has sites in English, Arabic, French, and Spanish.
INCAE Business School launched the Portal de Microfinanzas in September 2009, and the site has grown considerably since then. The goal of the Portal is to develop, collect and disseminate key resources on microfinance and small business development, tailored to the specific needs of practitioners, investors, researchers, donors, and others in Latin America and the Caribbean. It does so by offering up-to-date and relevant information on an open platform available to users.
Though similar to the other language affiliate sites, the Portal de Microfinanzas offers some interesting features that are worth highlighting, including:
- ¡Actualízate! This is an open space for individuals and organizations to share documents, presentations, results and opinions on innovative initiatives and trends in the sector. Users who are interested in contributing to this section can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Library The Library is a virtual archive for documents, case studies, presentations and research projects in Spanish on topics relevant to microfinance and small business development.
- Country Guide This section of the Portal is unique to the Spanish site. It offers an interactive map where users can click on countries to retrieve microfinance industry information by country, including statistics from the World Bank and MIX Market.
- Electronic Bulletin The Portal’s monthly bulletin lists the latest news, documents, events, and jobs posted on the site that month. Users can register to receive it on the Homepage by entering their email address.
In the 11 months that INCAE tracked user data in 2010, the Portal de Microfinanzas was visited by over 60,000 users coming from Peru, Mexico, Colombia, and Costa Rica, to name a few. For 2011 INCAE plans to grow the site by adding new resources and up-to-date information. In addition, INCAE extends an open invitation to users to share Spanish-language documents, news and information on microfinance in Latin America and the Caribbean by emailing: email@example.com.