SEFC was established in 2006 with the mission to advance the research and practice of SME financing and growth in India and ultimately to help develop best practices for a vibrant SME sector. The SEFC team seeks to study how financial markets and private market forces can foster the growth of SMEs and the role that SMEs play in the alleviation of poverty.
The nature of work conducted at SEFC places the organization at the intersection of action and research. SEFC conducts projects that develop insights and products to improve SMEs’ access to financial services, and to resolve existing blockages in the financial system such as labor turnover, market inefficiency, and poor infrastructures.
After formulating the problems commonly faced by SMEs, SEFC ideates innovations, practices and products for SMEs driven by knowledge sharing of academics, banks, NBFCs, and public partners. They test the ideas through on-the-ground implementations such as randomized impact evaluation, audit studies, and large scale econometric analysis. Finally, SEFC seeks to disseminate their findings through refining products to be applicable in multiple development contexts, publicizing ideas to policy makers and practitioners, and scaling up successful ideas to impact a greater number.