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Microfinance opportunities

We support microfinance initiatives that provide a hand up to aspiring business owners who, because of their circumstances, are otherwise unable to access mainstream financial services. We have joined forces with partners to provide access to microfinance and microenterprise development support to aspiring business owners who are experiencing disadvantage or financial exclusion.

Many Rivers Microfinance

Our partnership with Many Rivers provides support to people, particularly those in remote and regional areas who are experiencing hardship or are financially excluded, to establish their own micro businesses.
 

Clients access intensive business mentoring and coaching from Many Rivers' field officers as well as microfinance loans from Westpac, to help set them up for long term success.
 

The success of the Many Rivers model is evident in the high proportion of businesses which continue to thrive.  This has led to the expansion of the services into new regions since our partnership commenced in 2008.

Many Rivers success stories

Mervyn Pinto saw a niche for importing Portuguese Goan food, but due to his circumstances he didn't meet the credit requirements to get a traditional bank loan.  That problem was solved when he came across Many Rivers.

Good Return

Good Return, an initiative developed by World Education Australia with financial and non-financial support from Westpac, is an online microfinance lending portal.
 

Via the portal, micro-entrepreneurs who have traditionally been excluded from appropriate financial services, can register as a borrower to help fund their business. Anyone can go onto the portal and select the borrower they wish to help and provide the micro-loans (from as little as $25). 
 

Under Westpac Group's Matching Loans Program, any loan made by an employee is matched dollar-for-dollar annually to support other Good Return micro-entrepreneurs.

ACT Microcredit Loan Program

The program is delivered via a three-way partnership involving the ACT Government, Westpac Institutional Bank and Lighthouse Business Innovation Centre. This partnership seeks to provide fair, safe and ethical loans to people who, because of their circumstances, are not able to assess mainstream financial services.
 

The ACT Microcredit Loan Program provides low interest and fee-free loans from Westpac for eligible low-income earners who wish to start or expand an existing business. The program provides loan recipients with business skills development, individual mentoring, peer support and access to networking events.