The Masindi District Farmers Association (MADFA)’s SACCO has registered an increase in members’ savings from Shs. 1.2 bn to 2.1 bn over the past two years, representing a 75% growth.
According to an annual report presented by Daniel Kahwa, the Chairperson Board of Directors, at the SACCO’s 13th Annual General Meeting last Thursday, the recorded savings had exceeded, by 10.5%, the 1.9 bn projection for member deposits.
“The improvements in savings are attributed to improved member incomes as a result of the rice contract farming arrangements in partnership with Masindi Farmers Agro-Business Ltd and introduction of digital banking services using the mobile network platform. The savings are expected to grow to Shs 2.4 bn by the end of 2021,” explained Kahwa.
The report also indicated that the SACCO’s loan portfolio grew from Shs 2.1 bn to 3.2 bn over the same period, an outcome Kahwa attributed to investment in the refinement of society’s loan products and development of the rice value chain financing model.
“We are projecting the loan portfolio to increase to Shs 3.5 bn by the end of 2021,” he said.
Membership mixed fortunes
However, the results on membership figures were mixed.
While the report indicated that the number of active members has increased from 12,737 to 14,292 between January 2019 and December 2020, the figure fell short of the SACCO’s targeted number of 15,157 by end of 2020.
“I attribute the shortfall to the limited member mobilization activities in the financial year 2020 due to government restrictions on social gatherings which were brought about by COVID-19,” Kahwa noted.
The society plans to increase its membership to 17,000 by the end of 2021 through the massive mobilization of Smallholder farmers to participate in rice contract farming arrangements, and recruitment of soybean farmers under the CRAFT project implemented in partnership with Masindi Seed Company, among others.
During the same AGM, MADFA SACCO officially launched its revamped brand.
The Chairperson explained that brand strengthening is among the initiatives identified and prioritized in the SACCO’s marketing strategy to increase recognition by current and potential customers in order to build and grow the business.
About MADFA SACCO
MADFA SACCO is a member-owned financial cooperative active in the districts of Masindi Hoima, Buliisa, and Kiryandongo.
It was started by smallholder farmers under the Masindi District Farmers Association (MADFA) out of the need for financial services because financial institutions considered farmers too risky to finance.
Now 14,000-strong, the society began as a Savings and Loans Association with 40 members in 2005 and was registered as a cooperative savings and credit society in June 2005.
According to Bob Muzoora, the MADFA SACCO Secretary Manager, over the 15 years of its existence, the society has grown from strength to strength and has been enlisted among the big SACCOs in Uganda that will be supervised by the Bank of Uganda under Section 110(c) of the Tier 4 Microfinance Institution and MoneyLenders Act, 2016.
MADFA SACCO offers several loan products for SMEs, commercial agriculture, livestock farming, school fees, and so on.
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