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DAR-ES-SALAAM, – November 14, 2018– For the third consecutive year, the Citi Foundation in partnership with the Tanzania Association of Microfinance Institutions (TAMFI)  have launched the 3rd Citi Micro-entrepreneurship Awards(CMA) which seeks to recognize the extraordinary contributions that individual micro entrepreneurs have made to the economic stability of their families as well as their communities across Tanzania.

According to Citibank Tanzania CEO Mr Joseph Carasso, the CMA program has taken root in the country and in the last two years the awards have highlighted the achievements of some of the most innovative micro entrepreneurs. “This is part of Citi’s ongoing commitment to the field of microfinance and we believe that innovative micro-entrepreneurs are the big enterprises of the future”.

The CMA has been a signature component of the Citi Foundation’s work on financial inclusion for over a decade. Since 2005, the CMA has focused on providing economic empowerment opportunities for micro-entrepreneurs in about 30 countries. “About 70 million Tanzania Shillings will be awarded to 16 winners and will go a long way to highlight and encourage the contributions of micro-entrepreneurs and microfinance institutions (MFIs) in Tanzania” said Mr Carasso.


The Citi Foundation’s extensive work on financial inclusion contributes to progress on Sustainable Development Goal(SDG) 8, which aims among other things to provide full and productive employment and decent work for all.  According to Mr Carasso the Awards promote financial inclusion and generate recognition for the extraordinary contributions that individual micro entrepreneurs make for the economic sustainability of their families, their communities and the wider economy. This is specifically enabling progress on target SDG 9.3, which seeks to increase the access of small-scale enterprises, particularly in developing countries, to financial services to facilitate integration into value chains and markets.


The TAMFI Board Chairman, Mr Joel Mwakitalu, noted that the awards were a good catalyst to show the masses that prudent borrowing and repayments in business plays a key role in economic development. She added that “In the past two years, over 30 remarkable micro-entrepreneurs in Tanzania who were nominated by their microfinance Institution, won over Tsh 140 million.” The winners who exhibited excellence in areas such as loan repayment, business growth, innovation, job creation and impact on the community took home cash and non-cash prizes.


The categories will be based on demographics, gender and economic sector. The business should also have had a positive impact on the livelihood of the micro-entrepreneur, their family and their community. An overall winner – the Micro-entrepreneur of the Year Award and the Most Innovative MFI Award will also be included.


The CMA’s strives to ensure that small business owners throughout Tanzania are celebrated for their efforts in creating sustainable businesses in their communities. Participating micro-entrepreneurs in Tanzania will present their businesses judges who range from microfinance experts to leaders from the public, private and academic sectors.

The competition and judging process will be held in March 2019, when the winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in Dar es Salaam. To date, the Citi Foundation has invested more than $23.5 million in microfinance networks and microfinance institutions, and provided $10.5 million in cash prizes to more than 6,000 entrepreneurs.

Who is eligible to win?
Any micro entrepreneur accessing a microfinance loan from a MFI, Commercial, Community, Microfinance Bank, SACCO or VICOBA is eligible to compete for the prize. The financial institution should review its portfolio to identify no more than two candidates who can compete for a prize pool of over TZS 70,000,000. Women, Youths & Persons with disability are highly encouraged to participate.


What is the award criteria?

The successful entrepreneur should be a multifaceted individual whose business intervention has led to a broad range of changes in their business, in their community, in their family. The 5 focus areas are:

1) Business growth: Please explain the history of the business, what it is, how and when it was started, the revenue/sales volume when began and how it looks today; what do they sell on a monthly basis. How many branches do they have compared to when they started or has the operating facility been expanded or changed. Identify any multiplier effects that this business has had on other business—identify the benefits its suppliers or buyers have enjoyed as a result of this businesses growth noting whether these businesses’ are within the community, outside its district or beyond.

2) Employment creation: Share the evolution of number of employees. Has the business moved from sole proprietorship to employ more people including non-family members? How many people were employed initially and what the total is today. What is the gender break down of the employees?
3) Sustainability: Does the business meets its costs, is it formalized or considering registration. Is its success dependent on the entrepreneur or will it continue – based on the structure in place?
Innovation: What does the business do differently to make it successful? Does it offer a unique service or product? Have they introduced information and communication technologies or energy saving equipment to make it run more efficiently?

4) Financial discipline: Has the Client shown high degrees of financial integrity related to savings, loan repayments and investment of repeated increasing loan funds? Please provide specific information regarding credit and savings history.

5)Family impact: How has the success of the business positively impacted the family life? Has the business success enabled the client to improve housing, health care, education for children, sanitation etc. Please provide specific examples.

About the Citi Foundation:

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. The foundation invests in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant cities. The Citi Foundation’s “More than Philanthropy” approach leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfil their mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more information, visit

About Citi:

Citi, the leading global financial services company, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.


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Should you want to learn more about the program or would like to get involved, please

Contact: TAMFI- Winnie Terry +255 764 668 331


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