The Effect of Credit Bureau Arrival on Access to Finance in Sub-Saharan Africa: Introduction

In 2012, Joyce received a $3,000 loan to start her business selling kitchen tiles in Lusaka, Zambia. This was no small feat in a country where 27.4% of small business owners recognize access to finance as a major or severe obstacle to business operations. While Joyce lacked the collateral she would have needed for a loan only a few years earlier, Zambia’s newly established credit bureau had a documented record of her overall creditworthiness. When she applied for the loan, the bank verified her reputation and provided the loan within just a few days.