About us

Every SME in emerging markets should have access to knowledge and skills to grow their business.

Every SME in emerging markets should have access to knowledge and skills to grow their business

The Lendahand Foundation was established in 2014 to support impact investing platform Lendahand in its mission to fight poverty in emerging markets by investing in people and businesses. This has led to a unique partnership tackling two major challenges that SMEs in emerging markets are facing hindering their growth: finance and business skills.

Where Lendahand provides access to affordable loans to SMEs in emerging markets, the Foundation provides access to business knowledge and skills. This creates a leverage effect on SMEs to grow their business with a positive impact on local job creation, economic development and poverty alleviation.

With Lendahand providing affordable loans to SMEs and the Lendahand Foundation building their business knowledge and skills we jointly have positive impact on job creation, local economic development and poverty alleviation.

“We believe that credit alone is not enough, and that money cannot solve all difficulties confronting growing enterprises. There is a significant need to enhance and upgrade the capacity of the entrepreneurs to make sure that they are ready to pursue and manage the growth of their enterprise. As the enterprise grows, the challenges become complex and pressing. Therefore, providing relevant training is equally important to SMEs”

– Local partner Lendahand Foundation in the Philippines 

In 2014, the Lendahand Foundation launched its first training for SMEs in the Philippines. Soon after, the activities extended to Ghana and Mongolia. These one-day trainings in business skills were focused on financial management, business taxation, marketing and sales, product development and corporate social responsibility. All trainings have been implemented with the support of local trainers and Lendahand’s network of local partners reaching out to entrepreneurs. By the end of 2015, we had been able to train over 450 entrepreneurs in 22 trainings. 

The year 2016 marked the start of the Lendahand SME Academy in response to the need of SMEs to have an integrated program to develop their business skills. The interactive four-day training program has been developed in collaboration with MDF Training & Consultancy and consists of four modules: Business Model Canvas, Marketing, Financial Management and Pitch Your Business. To date over 400 entrepreneurs in the Philippines, Mongolia and Zambia have benefitted from following the SME Academy.


Manager Lendahand Foundation

Judith Mathijssen

What drives me are finding sustainable solutions and creating opportunities to promote entrepreneurship and financial inclusion in emerging countries. With more than 10 years of experience working in emerging countries as a consultant, I have seen an enormous drive among local entrepreneurs to thrive their business and create better life circumstances for themselves, their families and communities. Often, they lack the right push in the back with access to finance and knowledge. It motivates me to see a growing number of entrepreneurs benefitting from the support of the Lendahand Foundation in collaboration with impact investing platform Lendahand.

Peter Heijen

When I travelled through Nepal, India and Bangladesh a few years ago, I witnessed a lot of poverty and came to the realization that the strongest weapon against this is entrepreneurship and job creation. However, many business owners do not have access to affordable finance. Crowdfunding seemed like a good solution and that is why I started the organisation Lendahand. But capital alone is not always enough. Access to knowledge in the form of training is just as important. That is what the Lendahand Foundation is about!
Secretary & Treasurer

Wilbert Lek

For me, the combination of capital and education, which Lendahand offers via the crowdfunding platform and Foundation, is the key to success for entrepreneurs in emerging countries. During the 4 years that I lived and worked with my family in Asia, we have been able to see how necessary this support is. Building a business is the only way to escape structural poverty. I am happy and proud to use my knowledge and experience to help them realize this dream!

ANBI status

The Lendahand Foundation is a non-profit organization with ANBI status. This means that donations to the foundation are tax deductible.

ANBI details
Full name: Stichting Lendahand Foundation for Entrepreneurs Support
Chamber of Commerce: 60192550
RSIN: 853802452
IBAN: NL67ABNA050801027