Financial Sector Deepening Trust announces RFPs for Biashara Financing Innovation Fund – Tanzania

Deadline: 23 June 2019

The Financial Sector Deepening Trust (FSDT) is currently accepting proposals for its Biashara Financing Innovation Fund (BFIF) to support projects that will increase penetration of SME Finance Products, Services and Business Models to SME through a challenge fund.

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The BFIF is a challenge fund that aims to contribute to the acceleration of the development of an inclusive SME Finance ecosystem in Tanzania. Through the provision of financial assistance, BFIF supports roll-out and scale up of innovative and customer centric products targeting Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) that are affordable, accessible and responsive to SME needs. The BFIF aims at strengthening the supply of inclusive SME Finance products in Tanzania.

The BFIF intends to contribute to increase penetration of products, client value and sustainability of SME Finance products. Specifically, BFIF aims to help Financial Service Providers (FSPs) and FinTech firms to: –

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  • scale up products and services that increase options for SMEss to access and use financial services and products
  • improve offerings of existing financial products, services and business models through improvements in scale, efficiency and client value,
  • strengthen distribution of viable financial products, services and business models that have been researched and developed, tested, and piloted.
  • build the capacity of FSP and Fintechs in deploying and scaling up of products targeting SME.

Funding Information

The BFIF will provide financial support up to US$ 100,000 per proposal.

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Focus Areas

The BFIF seeks proposals covering any of the following focus areas:

  • Scale
    • The BFIF seeks to support projects that will increase penetration of SME Finance Products, Services and Business Models to SME. The BFIF seeks to support promising solutions targeting SME.
  • Client value
    • The BFIF seeks to supports innovations that provide good value to SME. To achieve this, products must be appropriate, affordable, and accessible and used to address the needs of this market segment. The services, products and business models must also address the real needs of the target markets.
  • Sustainability
    • The BFIF supports the development of viable and sustainable business models. Business models must ensure access to SME Finance Products, Services and Business Models services for a large number of SME on an on-going basis. The BFIF seeks to support innovative partnerships aimed at building effective and scaled-up sales and distribution channels.

Eligibility Criteria

  • The challenge is open to market actors in the SME Finance space offering Products, Services and Business Models and other auxiliary services to SME that operating in Tanzania and internationally.
  • Specifically, eligible organizations can include the following:
    • Microfinance institutions and Financial institutions
    • SACCOs and other community based organizations
    • Fintechs and Techfins
    • Mobile Network Operators
    • Aggregators
    • Cooperatives
    • Payment service providers/ platform developers
    • Non-government organizations
    • Industry associations
  • The intent is to encourage innovations generated locally or globally in business solutions that accelerate the development of inclusive SME Finance Products, Services and Business Models sector in Tanzania. Proposals to the BFIF can be on the following:
    • Products
    • Processes
    • Technology
    • Models
  • Local and international firms are welcome to participate based on the terms and conditions of the BFIF as long as they are developing business solutions or products that will be implemented in the Tanzania market and will be beneficial to the SME segment. Start-ups are also welcome to participate and are encouraged to form strategic partnerships with existing companies to strengthen their applications.

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted via email at the address given on the website.

For more information, please visit

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