The effect of microfinance on the growth of female-owned businesses in Ghana

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The study explored the effect of Microfinance on the growth of female-owned businesses by focusing on how the financial and non-financial services offered by Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) affect the increase in assets, employees and revenues. It also explored factors that undermine the effect of these services on the growth of female-owned businesses. The research is a qualitative and uses purposive sampling technique. The findings of the research were based on the responses of thirty female clients of both Asa Savings and Loans, Odorkor Branch and Progressive Savings and Loans, Accra Central Branch. Branch managers of the Microfinance companies earlier stated were also administered questionnaires. Data gathered was analyzed using descriptive analysis and cross tabulation. The research revealed that MFIs have had a positive effect on the growth of female-owned businesses although some factors undermined this effect. These factors include the economic situation, the size of loans and the attitudes of the business owners. Furthermore the research showed that the advisory services offered were not being utilized by most of the respondents. However, the few who used these services observed a significant increase in management and control of their businesses which contributed to growth. Based on the findings, it was concluded that Microfinance Institutions have had a positive effect on female-owned businesses. Some recommendations provided by the researcher include a more rigorous advisory unit for MFIs, government and international grants to help increase loan sizes and also increase in market research to provide services that suit the needs of female clients.
Thesis submitted to the Department of Business Administration, Ashesi University College, in partial fulfillment of Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, April 2016
Ghana, Accra, microfinance, women, female-owned businesses