BNP Paribas Fortis is the main partner of microfinance institution microStart. We also support the BenevoLab programme and are committed to social entrepreneurs by offering them adapted products and services.
microStart offers those persons excluded from the traditional banking circuit microcredits that will allow them to create or maintain their activity. Since 2010, microStart has granted some 1 200 microcredits from € 500 to € 15 000. According to a study by the Vlerick Business School, 81% of persons who benefited from a microcredit in 2011 and 2012 maintained their job, thus allowing the public authorities to economise € 2.21 million. There are microStart agencies in Brussels, Liège, Gent, Charleroi and Antwerp.
The BenevoLab programme (formerly MicroFinance Sans Frontières) allows active or retired workers who so wish to make their knowledge available to microfinance institutions throughout the world. BenevoLab boats 117 volunteers. In 2014, six missions were carried out, mostly in Africa.
Supporting social entrepreneurship
In 2014, the total amount incurred granted to social entrepreneurs reached € 52 million. Moreover, we organise events allowing social entrepreneurs to get in touch with other players of the sector as well as some information sessions on the possibilities of financing offered to them.