Khalti, a digital wallet and online payment service provider, has won Fintech Innovation Fund from the United Nations. The fund was jointly launched by the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) earlier this year. Along with Khalti, a total of 10 companies from across Asia-Pacific region have won the Innovation Fund.
After being announced the winner for the Fintech Innovation Fund, Khalti rolled out a special project in July. The project supported women-led micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) in 12 different districts across the nation, from Sankhuwasabha in the east to Darchula in the west. Women involved in Dhaka weaving to Allo processing and food processing were supported as part of this project. Khalti aimed to solve gaps between production and sales of goods produced by 3500 women involved in MSMEs in Nepal.
The project intended to deliver financial and digital literacy and skills to women-owned, managed or led MSMEs by bringing all the MSMEs to a digital platform and upgrading their current style of working. Khalti will be providing them necessary training to be self-sufficient and help them in expanding their business and resources. Khalti is partnering with SAARC Business Association of Home Based Workers (SABAH Nepal) to implement the project. Furthermore, Khalti is also mobilizing Smart Chhoris to assist the MSMEs.
Over the next year, UNESCAP and UNCDF will provide financial and technical support for Khalti to conduct the project and introduce digital and financial solutions that improve access to finance and enhance operational efficiency of these women-led MSMEs.
Elated by this achievement, Arvind Sah, Director of Khalti shared, “Micro, Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (MSMEs) are a vital source of employment and a significant contributor to the country’s GDP in Nepal. However, most MSMEs have been facing difficulty in accessing loans and other financial services. We are building a hyper-local market in Khalti platform and conducting marketing and sales of goods produced by the women and enabling payments of goods directly through Khalti app. And, on the basis of their monthly income level, we will recommend for loan from our partner bank so that they can expand their business. This project offers payment solutions and improved access to finance to the women-led MSMEs in Nepal.”