AMK Microfinance Institution PLC (AMK MFI) originated from the micro-credit & savings program of Irish NGO Concern Worldwide, originally established in the early 1990s. In 2002, Concern Worldwide decided to create a separate microfinance institution under the name Angkor Microheranhvatho Kampuchea (AMK) which subsequently became known and re-registered as “AMK Microfinance Institution Plc”. This move in 2002 was in line with the changes to Cambodian regulations in microfinance, as well as developments in the microfinance market.
In July 2003, AMK began operating independently of Concern and subsequently received its microfinance license from the National Bank of Cambodia in 2004 to offer microfinance services across Cambodia.
By 2005, AMK had made its first operating profit, had its first external debt funding approved, and had created a social performance management mechanism. In the following years, AMK experienced rapid growth in its core credit business, extending its branch network to every province of the country. By 2009, it was operating in all provinces of Cambodia and had become the largest lending institution in Cambodia in terms of borrower numbers.
In 2010, AMK began a strategic transformation, from a rural credit-only business into a broader provider of microfinance services. This strategy was driven by the ambition to provide a wider array of financial services to Cambodia’s under-served population and thereby further assist them in improving their livelihood options.
Towards this goal, 2010 was a milestone year when AMK received its license from the National Bank of Cambodia as a Microfinance Deposit-taking Institution (MDI).
During 2011/12, with approval from the National Bank of Cambodia, AMK pioneered Branchless Banking by offering deposit products to low-income households through an agent network. This service specifically targeted households who may not have been able to access the same service at any bank or MDI office.
In 2011, AMK added money transfers to its service offering across it branch and agent network, targeting small domestic transfers with a competitive fee structure.
In 2013, AMK introduced ATMs/CDMs, a channel which has subsequently been expanded to all branches.
In 2014, AMK began offering health and accident insurance policies (in partnership with the largest private insurer in Cambodia) to AMK’s loan clients as a pilot, which was then rolled out across the country in 2015. Over 80% of AMK’s clients now take out insurance policies for themselves and about 25% buy additional policies for their spouse. In the same year, AMK started its digital transformation. The first digital transformation project was its lending business. AMK developed an inhouse loan origination system which allowed loan officers to conduct business in the field with their clients wirelessly via a Tablet. It is not only allowed for better information to be captured but simplified the whole loan origination process in AMK, leading to cost saving and better response to client needs.
In 2019/2020, AMK migrated its core banking and switching system to a new platform, to enable AMK to execute its digital transformation goal and respond to a rapidly changing market. The new core banking and switching successfully went live on Jan 01 2019 across all branch and operational areas. Since then, AMK has introduced a number of new digital products such as AMK’s Mobile Banking App, AMK Pay (Merchant QR payment), Client Referral App, integrated with a third party to pilot a digital loan application using a chatbot to streamline the process. In addition, AMK has fully integrated with Bakong platform (Blockchain technology implemented by National Bank of Cambodia to allow inter-bank operability among all licensed provider), CSS (Cambodia Share Switch), FAST Payment and integrate with over 300 billers in Cambodia. AMK launched its first international money transfer services with Swift, and other partner such as KB Bank, EMQ,Thunes and Unionpay.
Throughout its history, AMK’s commitment to its social goals has been absolute. AMK’s comprehensive social performance management framework ensures that the organization stays focused on its mission of assisting large numbers of low income people.
As of 2021, AMK had achieved nearly one million customers, with 150 operating branches, and nearly 7,000 agents nationwide. AMK provides a wide variety of products and services including Loans, Deposit, Money Transfer, and Micro Insurance (focus on health and accident), Bills Payment Services, Payroll, Leasing, ATMs, and CDMs, especially the Mobile Banking App which can pay for water, electricity, garbage, top-up phone cards, and pay bills by scanning KHQR, transferring money between other local banks with Bakong and many other services.