India’s last-mile delivery of financial services is hindered by the digital and gender divide, posing significant challenges. While basic access to financial services has been achieved, there remains a disparity in the usage and quality of these services, especially among low-income and vulnerable groups. A critical factor in ensuring sustainable usage and maintaining services quality is the role of Business Correspondent (BC) agents. However, the gender gap in BC agents delivering affordable financial services is a pressing concern. To enhance their viability and bridge the gender gap, Grameen Foundation USA and Grameen Foundation India, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, launched the BCNM Experiments & Demonstrating Scale (BEADS) Project.
The endline evaluation report offers a comprehensive assessment of the BEADS experiment encompassing three pilot interventions, strategically designed to enhance agent viability. The report showcases project performance, and underscores the impacts arising from these pilots. Notably, the project led to product diversification, the augmentation of agent soft skills to better serve customers, and an enhancement in customer awareness through the implementation of low-cost marketing efforts.
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