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XLRI Organised ‘3rd International Workshop on Inclusive Finance’

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November 4, 2014: XLRI- Xavier School of Management, recently hosted the ‘3rd International Workshop on Inclusive Finance'. The theme of the workshop was ‘Making Finance and Insurance Markets Work for the Poor'.

XLRI's inclusive finance event has emerged as a platform to generate ideas and solutions of financial inclusion

Fr. E. Abraham, S.J. Director of XLRI commented, "Since its launch 3 years ago, we are happy to know that XLRI's inclusive finance event has emerged as a platform to generate ideas and solutions of financial inclusion".

The 3-day long workshop was inaugurated on 31st October in presence of Fr. E. Abraham, S.J. (Director of XLRI), Mr. B Sriram (Managing Director, State Bank of India), Mr. Vijay Mahajan (Founder and Chief Executive Ofiicer, BASIX Group) and Dr. H. K. Pradhan, (Professor of Finance and Economics, XLRI Jamshedpur). On the occasion, Dr. Pranabesh Ray (Dean [Academics] at XLRI) read out the ‘Rashtiya Ekta Divas' pledge commemorating the birth anniversary of Sardar Ballabh Bhai Patel.

The inaugural address, delivered by Mr. B Sriram, MD, State Bank of India,

In the inaugural address, delivered by Mr. B Sriram, MD, State Bank of India, he distinguished between Financial Inclusion and Inclusive Finance, which he said, is wider & encompasses both means and an end. Inclusive Finance has a superior focus on relationships, rather than products, he observed.

In his keynote address, Mr Vijay Mahajan, Founder and Chairman of BASIX touched upon the history of banking, mutual bodies and microcredit across centuries across the world and contended that the co-operative and "Mutuals" structure- sans a profit motive- is most appropriate for players in the microfinance space. Pointing out need for more research on this he added that social cost must be factored in while assessing performance of these firms.

XLRI-NABARD ‘Innovations4Impact Award' Presentation was also organised at the workshop.

XLRI-NABARD ‘Innovations4Impact Award' Presentation was also organised at the workshop. Seven selected innovators in micro-finance domain and social entrepreneurs from all across India demonstrated their innovations to a panel of experts and workshop participants.

Among them were- Bandhan Financial Services Pvt. Ltd, Kolkata who showcased their project of ‘Targeting the Hard Core Poors' where they ran a financial literacy drive in the remote areas of Murshidabad; Sub-K iTransactions Ltd, Hyderabad, whose presentation was‘Mobile Technologies & Branchless Banking'; Leaps & Bounds, Pune showcased their project ‘SHG Accounting & MIS System using Tablet PC' they launched for SHGs in Nandurbar Districts of Maharastra in association with NABARD; ‘Rang De' the web based social initiative from Bangalore that supports rural entrepreneurs from low income households by providing access to low cost microcredit presented their ‘Peer-to-Peer Lending Model'; VimoSEWA, Community-based Micro Insurance company, Ahmedabad talked about their "voluntary, stand alone, multi-product, full service micro insurance distribution model'; Wealth Risk presented their innovative service of ‘weather insurance' and Reserve Bank of India, Chennai showcased their Financial Gallery they have set up to showcase various banking aspects and the concept of financial literacy to visitors.

 

Their presentations evoked a lot of interest and appreciation leaving the delegates with inspiration

Their presentations evoked a lot of interest and appreciation leaving the delegates with inspiration to think out of the box about access, management and delivery of inclusive finance.

The seven winners were felicitated by Fr. E. Abraham S.J. Director of XLRI and Mr. Subrata Gupta, Chief General Manager, NABARD. The trophies were accepted by Mr. Chandra Shekhar Ghosh, Chairman & MD, Bandhan Financial Services Pvt. Ltd; Mr. D. Sattaiah, Managing Director, Sub-K iTransactions Ltd; Mr. Bhushan Dere, CEO, LEAPS & BOUNDS; Mr. N K Ramakrishna, Co-founder & CEO, Rang De; Mr. Arman Oza, CEO, VimoSEWA; Mr. Anuj Kumbat, CEO, Weather Risk Management Services Ltd; and Mr. S. Thyagarajan, DGM, Reserve Bank of India, Chennai.

‘XLRI-Citi Financial Inclusion Challenge' on the theme - ‘Innovations in Financial Literacy and Consumer Protection'

Dr. HK Pradhan, Professor of Finance and Economics at XLRI & Convener of the Workshop said, "Deepening of financial inclusion is the priority in government policy, and the workshop brings all stake holders such as banks, insurance companies, technology and telecom providers, for an intensive discussion. The event serves as a forum for intensive discussions for all practitioners and stakeholders involved in financial inclusion. I hope that the workshop brings out actionable insights to achieve the noble objective of inclusive finance".

As part of the 3rd International Workshop on Inclusive Finance, an inter B-School competition ‘XLRI-Citi Financial Inclusion Challenge' on the theme - ‘Innovations in Financial Literacy and Consumer Protection' was held. 11 finalist teams from noted B-Schools across the country were invited to showcase their presentation before an eminent Jury Panel, that included Mr. Rajarshi Chakraborty (Director, Citibank N.A.), Ms. Tanwi Kumari (Specialist (Asia), Smart Campaign, Center for Financial Inclusion, ACCION), Dr. Angela C. Lyons (Director, University of Illinois - Center for Economic and Financial Education, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics) and Mr. J. K. Thakar (Deputy General Manager (MC and FI), State Bank of India).

 

The team from IRMA was adjudged winner of the competition.

The finalists comprised teams from IIM-B, IIM-Trichy, IRMA-Anand, SIBM-Pune, XIM-Bhubaneswar, XIMR-Mumbai, Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics- Pune, IFMR - Chennai, NMIMS - Mumbai and XLRI-Jamshedpur. The team from IRMA was adjudged winner of the competition.

"Our goal was to engage students to develop customer centric approach and attitudinal changes that are needed for the financial service providers, and design stronger client protection principles embodying ethical guidelines while dealing with vulnerable clients, and how to provide consumers of financial products with adequate information, thereby enabling prudent behavior, without any hidden costs or a false promise or deceive, and how to educate clients to undertake judicious financial decisions to ensure future financial security", commented Dr. H K Pradhan.

The ‘3rd International workshop on Inclusive Finance' witnessed several panel discussions and plenary sessions

The ‘3rd International workshop on Inclusive Finance' witnessed several panel discussions and plenary sessions that were participated by eminent speakers like Dr. Jean Dreze (Development Economist & Professor, Delhi School of Economics), Mr. Aloysius P Fernandez (Director and Chairperson, Board of Directors of NABFINS), Dr. Alok Misra (Chief Executive Officer, Micro-Credit Ratings International Ltd), Mr. Y.C. Nanda (Former Chairman, NABARD), Mr. Chandra Shekhar Ghosh (Chairman and Managing Director, Bandhan Financial Services Pvt. Ltd.), Mr. Prakash Kumar (General Manager, SIDBI), Dr. Rangan Vardhan (Chief Executive Officer, MicroGraam) to name a few.

The 3-day workshop also witnessed presentations Academicians and practitioners in the domain of finance in India and abroad. A cultural performance of Chau Dance recital was organised at XLRI Campus. The workshop concluded with a "Doctoral Colloquium" on the concluding day where the ongoing researches on inclusive finance were showcased. A "Knowledge Fair" was also held in parallel having stalls by regulators, banks and MFI firms alike, to spread awareness about innovations in this space.

About XLRI
XLRI-Xavier School of Management, Jamshedpur is a premier, private management institute in India founded in 1949 by Fr Quinn Enright, S.J. in the ‘steel city' of Jamshedpur www.xlri.ac.in.

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