Linking with savings and credit cooperatives (SACCOs) to expand financial access in rural areas: a case study of CRDB Bank in Tanzania

The case study reviews CRDB Bank, the fifth largest commercial bank in Tanzania, and its desire to do ‘something positive’ about the majority of Tanzanians alienated from the commercial banking sector. Although this appears to be a story about CRDB’s level of corporate social responsibility, it may have more to do with a smart, forward thinking bank strategizing to the deal with the inevitability of a saturated high-end, urban banking market.

The author describes CRDB’s strategy of linking with Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCOs) as a way to cost-effectively increase the supply of financial services in the rural country side. Some of findings from the study are that there must be the willingness and commitment from management to enter the lower-income market, to make a large upfront investment into the model and to have a long-term vision.

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